Month: April 2010

Audi RS3 Caught on the Road

The hottest hatch of all hot hatches, the upcoming Audi RS3, has been spotted testing on the Nurburgring in Germany, and we have pictures. It may look like an S3 on the outside, but it’s sporting the guts of the high-performance RS3 underneath. Expect it to receive the same 2.5-liter, five-cylinder turbo engine found in the TT RS, but tuned to more than 330 hp giving it a 0 to 60 time of less than 5 seconds. The engine will be paired with Audi’s S tronic transmission with the quattro system putting down power to all four wheels. Plenty of interior and exterior changes will give the RS3 a more aggressive look than the S3. We expect Audi to unveil the RS3 officially later this year. Will it make it here to the States? Probably not, unfortunately, but we can always dream. Check out more info and pictures at...

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Audi TT and TTS Get Some Tweaks for 2011

Although the Audi TT has been a winner since its introduction back in 1995, that doesn’t mean there still isn’t room for improvement. And improvement is just what Audi will be imparting on the 2011 version of their much-loved TT. There are a host of equipment changes for 2011 TT Starting with the 2.0 TFSI Quattro, you will now get chrome dual tailpipes, optional Audi magnetic ride with better differentiation between the ‘Sport’ & ‘Normal’ modes. The sport button program will modify the steering servo boost as well as the exhaust sound and there are new standard bumpers, radiator grille, fog lamp grille and fog lamps in chrome. Additionally there are interior aluminum optic accents including the steering wheel, center console, and door liner, and the accents continue on the rings, frames, and strips in high-gloss black. There is an aluminum strip above the glove box door that is now brushed grey. There are new exterior colors for America: nougat brown, titanium gray, and garnet red. Along with the new exterior colors, Audi has added optional Fine Nappa leather that is thermally resistant and reduces the temperature of the seating upholstery up to 68 degrees Fahrenheit. For the TTS, Audi has added a new grille, fog lamp grille in honeycomb optic, fog lamps and horizontal cross braces in...

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“Audi A1 Beat Driver” Game Added to iPhone App Store

Adding to the existing A4 Driving Challenge game on the iPhone that Audi released in September of 2008 to promote the then-redesigned A4, the company just released a new game called “Audi A1 Beat Driver” to promote the new small car. As with any advertisement/promo-game, it doesn’t cost anything to download and play. Audi A1 Beat Driver features nine songs to drive to the beat to, if that makes sense. In the game, you drive the A1 down a virtual road, swiping the screen to steer while trying to hit as many blocks as possible to the beat of the music. Imagine Rock Band or Guitar Hero, but with a compact car instead. As with every video game that’s ever existed, you try and collect power-ups and avoid obstacles along the way. An International list of scores is kept on the leaderboard in-game, and naturally you can share your score via Twitter or Facebook and view more information about the Audi A1 from within the app. I wouldn’t call the game a “keeper,” but it’s definitely worth a download and one...

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MTM’s New R8 GT3-2 – A Rear-Wheel-Drive Racecar

Just as we hear reports of Audi planning a race-ready but street-legal R8 GT3, MTM comes out with this – a massively fast, supercharged, lightweight, Rear-Wheel-Drive version of the V8-powered supercar called the R8 GT3-2. The “2” at the end represents its drive wheels, differentiating it from the standard AWD cars. While the performance enhancements are significant (and we will go over those in the following paragraphs,) what we really need to focus on here is that this is an Audi R8 without its quattro AWD system; it’s only driven by the rear wheels. While that may seem like a disadvantage to some, others (especially racers,) will consider this a godsend and buy one based solely on that fact. Not only does getting rid of quattro lighten up the car, but gives it an entirely new driving dynamic. RWD cars are more fun to drive, for one, but can also be driven more aggressively and can be taken around turns sideways (powersliding, drifting,) whereas AWD cars have trouble doing that. So, what else has been changed? MTM supercharged the R8, effectively giving the 4.2-liter V8 engine 560 HP – 35 more than the V10 version with significantly less weight. It’s only boosted to 8 psi, so crank up that boost and you’ll get even more power. Zero to 62 mph comes in only 3.9 seconds, up to a top...

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ABT R8 GT R – A Racecar for the Road

If you think the standard Audi R8 supercar is a bit too “posh” for you, check out what German tuning firm Abt Sportsline just churned out. The ABT R8 GT R isn’t just your standard tuned car, but a lightweight, high-powered race car for the road and track. The first thing Abt did to this monster is take of Audi’s stock hood, front and rear aprons, rear wing, tailgate, and even the outline edge on the rear, external mirrors, and the door panels – replacing them with their own versions made completely from carbon fiber. The side windows are even replaced with a high-strength, lightweight material called Makrolon. All this stripping down doesn’t sacrifice anything but bulk, and makes for a weight savings of over 220 lbs – a significant number when flying down a track. As you might expect, Abt didn’t leave the engine alone in this beast. The monstrous 5.2-liter, 525 hp V10 engine in the factory car has been tuned to 620 hp, allowing the Abt R8 GT R to travel from zero to 62 mph in only 3.2 seconds. Keep that right pedal down and the car will reach 124 mph in 9.9 seconds, up to a top speed of 202 mph. Abt also added a sports suspension and adjustable dampers to fine-tune the performance, along with modified brakes to deal with the extra power....

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Audi RS5 Coming to the US After All?

We just got word of a rumor reporting that the coveted Audi RS5 super-coupe might end up coming to the States, despite Audi’s saying it’s for the European market only. Last month we learned that the RS5 will get a naturally aspirated version of the wonderful 4.2-liter V8 engine found in the R8. In the RS5, it will produce 450 hp with 317 lb-ft of torque, allowing it to propel itself from zero to 60 mph in only 4.6 seconds. The standard transmission is Audi’s seven-speed dual-clutch S tronic box, with sadly no word of a manual transmission anywhere. If we convert the 77,700 Euro base price into US Dollars though, it ends up running more than $105,000 – a price I’m not sure enough people are willing to pay. What’s interesting is that Audi dropped the 4.2-liter V8 mill from the S5 this year, and now they’re just tuning it for a bit more power and throwing it into a slightly modified version of the S5 and charging over $20,000 more for it. Don’t get me wrong, there are plenty of additions that make the RS5 a worthwhile upgrade (like the new center differential, for example,) but by breaking that $100K mark, I think too many buyers will consider a different model instead. I understand Audi’s hesitation bringing the RS5 over here, but I have to admit I’m...

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