Month: June 2013

Audi Wins 2013 Le Mans Amid Somber Atmosphere

  This past weekend, the crown jewel of Audi’s 2013 racing season was campaigned. Making history last year as the first hybrid race car to win the 24-hour race, the Audi R18 e-tron quattro defended its accomplishment for a second-straight year at the Circuit de la Sarthe. Completing 348 laps worth 4742.89 kilometers around the 4.273-kilometer road course, Tom Kristensen, Allan McNish and Loïc Duval combined efforts to bring the #2 Audi prototype to a 12th win since the 2000 Le Mans race. As a team, Audi Sport Team Joest R18 e-tron quattro race machines claimed the first, third and fifth place positions in the 2013 edition of the French endurance classic. For some, seeing the Audi Sport Team Joest organization once again celebrating a victory at the 24 Hours of Le Mans was somewhat of a sleeper story. Despite the near magic of constantly winning a daylong endurance race, the competition in most of the Le Mans races contended since 2000 would consist of one Audi racing against another Audi prototype car. Even the company’s press release seemed to be taking the news of their 12th 24 Hours of Le Mans win in 14 runnings in stride. Perhaps what had been most coveted is an adversary to the great name. From 2007 to 2011, Peugeot gave Audi a reason to fear losing to the 908 HDi FAP race car....

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Details and Pricing: the 2014 Audi SQ5

Details and pricing are finally announced on Audi’s first-ever S version of a Q model – the SQ5. Why should we be excited about this? Because it’s a freaking S version of a Q model! We’ll start with what we obviously care about the most: Performance The standard Q5 comes with a weakling 211 hp, 2.0-liter four-banger, or a more potent 274 hp, 3.0-liter powerplant for a 0-60 mph time of 6.0 and 7.0 seconds, respectively. If you decide to go the economical route and get the Q5 Hybrid, your 245 hp 2.0-liter will bag you 0-60 in 6.8 seconds. The SQ5 ups the ante and drops in a more potent 3.0-liter TFSI V6 producing 354 hp and 347 lb-ft of torque, motivating the crossover to hit 60 mph from a stop in only 5.1 seconds. It’s mated to the same eight-speed transmission as the rest of the Q5s, and of course has the good ol’ quattro AWD system we’ve grown to love Audi for. The Traction Control System is interesting on the SQ5, adjusting itself based on whether or not the roof rack is installed – if it is, it adjusts the system’s center of gravity to handle better, and when it’s roof-rack-free, the ESC changes to allow a sportier drive. Clever indeed. Pricing The standard Q5 starts at $35,900, or you can get the Q5 Hybrid from...

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XXX Performance’s Wild Wide-Body Audi R8 V10

With a name that sounds like they make more adult films than cars, you’d expect a car from XXX Performance to be pretty wild. And to say the least, the Audi R8 V10 they’ve modified to their own needs looks the part. The Looks Not everyone’s going to go crazy over the looks of this thing – but you can’t please everyone. They’ve given the R8 V10 an almost entirely new body, as you can see, with their aggressive GT-X650 wide-body kit, then wrapped it in blue CFC chrome and fake carbon fiber accents. They’ve also added a carbon-look wrap to the rear-view mirrors, roof scoops, side blades and rear diffusers – I’m not a fan of fake carbon, so I’m not all about that, but at least you can get the side blades in real carbon if you want. And you probably want. After all, any real car enthusiast is going to be able to tell the difference between real and fake carbon fiber, and who wants their supercar accented with fake carbon? You have to admit, the R8 looks pretty badass with a widebody kit. In addition, they’ve lowered the car with H&R coilovers converted to air cushions that can be dynamically raised and lowered at the driver’s will and speedhump situation. The wheel wells are filled up with 20-inch three-part GTR forged wheels from Forgiato. The...

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