Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Audi A6 Hybrid Not Coming Until 2015?

Audi has used the 2011 North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) in Detroit to introduce the new A6 and, alongside the new sedan, the company also presented its hybrid configuration. Unfortunately for the United States however, the hybrid won't make it to the US sooner than 2015. At least, this is what AutoWeek reported today, after Audi of America president Johan de Nysschen explained that a decision regarding the US debut is still being made.

Of course, Audi hasn't released an official statement regarding the debut of the A6 hybrid but the United States will until then have to settle for the regular A6 which will be offered in the country with a 3.0-liter supercharged V6 engine that will develop 300 horsepower and 325 lb-ft of torque.

The hybrid presented in Detroit uses an electric motor installed behind the TFSI powerplant and a modified 8-speed tiptronic transmission that sends the power generated by the two engines to the front wheels.

The TFSI 2.0-liter engine develops a maximum power of 211 horsepower, while the electric unit brings an additional 45 horsepower and 211 Nm of torque. As always, a battery is also part of the system, in this case a lithium-ion pack that generates 39 kW.

As for performances, the car sprints in 7.3 seconds from zero to 100 km/h (62.14 mph), top speed is 238 km/h (147.89 mph) and the average fuel consumption is 6.2 liters per 100 km (37.94 US mpg), a CO2 emissions level of 142 grams per km (228.53 g/mile).

Audi launches R8 5.2 FSI in India

German luxury car manufacturer Audi announced the launch of the much awaited all new Audi R8 5.2 FSI for India, strengthening its position in the super sports car segment

While Audi might be well known among the general motoring population in India for its luxury cars and mighty SUV’s, the company’s flagship is nothing short of a supercar – the R8. Introduced back in 2006 with a V8 engine, the R8 quickly became the supercar of choice for those with a more practical disposition – a territory hitherto reserved for the famous arse-engined sports cars from Audi’s compatriot competitor.

But what really got everyone talking was the upgrade from the original 4.2-litre V8 motor to a brand new 5.2-litre FSI V10 engine from the Lamborghini Gallardo. And while the older version of the R8 was available for quite some time now in India, the latest, more powerful and faster version of this mid-engined monster of a sportscar has made its way to our shores.

Propelled by the powerful V10 engine which makes a staggering 525PS of power and 530Nm of torque, the new Audi R8 V10 goes from zero to 100 km/h in a scant 3.9 seconds, and boasts a heady top speed of 316 km/h! This combined with the lightweight aluminium body built around the Audi Space Frame chassis and the company’s proprietary Quattro permanent four-wheel drive system also makes for a sharp handling package which matches, if not bests, some of the top supercars in the world. The R8 5.2 FSI will be available with a six-speed manual transmission or Audi’s R-tronic electro-hydraulic manual gearbox which manages ultra fast gear changes.

Speaking on the occasion, Michael Perschke, Head of Audi India said, “The Audi R8 V10 exemplifies our belief in developing and delivering world class automobiles to sports car enthusiasts in India. Embodying our philosophy of “Vorsprung durch Technik,” every Audi R8 5.2 FSI is hand-built and demonstrates paramount engineering excellence that is skillfully blended with distinct design cues which will enable us to establish new benchmarks in the performance sports car segment”.

Completely hand-built with an extensive list of standard equipment, the Audi R8 5.2 FSI is customizable right down to the finest detail, giving performance car enthusiasts an absolutely premium experience. The Audi R8 5.2 FSI will be priced at Rs. 1,32,49,000 (ex-showroom Maharashtra)

Audi Launches Urban Intelligent Assist Project

On track to help mother company Volkswagen achieve its goal of overtaking Toyota as the number one manufacturer in the world by 2018, Audi is continuing to invest in the side projects it sees essential for future growth.

After announcing the largest investment in its history at the end of last year, Audi now launches the Urban Intelligent Assist in the US, an endeavor meant to develop the next generation connected car, driver assistance and infrastructure electronics systems.

The project is coordinated by Audi and involves researchers from the Electronics Research Laboratory in Silicon Valley, the University of Southern California, University of California at Berkeley, University of California at San Diego and the University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute (UMTRI).

The future system to be developed by the parties involved is intended to ease navigation in the cities of tomorrow. The goal is to allow a computer to perform tasks which currently are more relative than absolute, like recognizing individual motorists behind the wheel, knowing preferred destinations, preferred routes and the time needed to get there and helping the drivers detect and avoid dangerous situations more effectively.

The research will cover several areas, including Urban Crash Analysis, Urban Diagnostic, Driver Diagnostics, Urban Assistance and Urban Navigation.

“Technologies that help motorists become more aware and efficient are a crucial step toward solving some of the biggest transportation challenges on the horizon across the world,” said Burkhard Huhnke, executive director of the Audi Electronics Research Laboratory in Palo Alto.

“Audi is confident that this initiative will provide an important insight on the future of urban transportation and produce innovative concepts that promote efficient, pleasant, and safer mobility.”

Audi to Launch Three New Models in India in 2011

German premium carmaker Audi is looking to increase its business in India and how else it could do that if not by launching the latest goodies it has prepared for the rest of the world in this particular country too? Press Trust of India reports that Audi will debut its A6, A7 and A8 models in India this year, with sales to begin in the next few months following the first public appearance in front of the potential buyers.

The first new Audi model to hit the Indian market is the A8 which is expected to see daylight in February. However, it won't come in regular form, but with an extended wheelbase, specifically designed for a number of limited markets.

Next in queue is the A7 that will greet the first fans in May or June, followed by the A6 that will most likely arrive in the fourth quarter of the year. The new A6 is currently on display at the 2011 North American International Auto Show in Detroit, alongside its hybrid variant. Both are scheduled to go on sale in specific markets later this year.

"In China and Japan we are the number one (car maker). In India and in U.S, we are growing very fast. However, in India, we need to be patient. We intend to reach 23 to 24 per cent market share this year of the targeted 30 per cent," Audi India Director Michael Perschke told PTI in an interview.

"After phenomenal growth last year, we are looking at a number of 4,500 units this year. We will have a presence in Surat, Ludhiana, Nagpur and Indore in 2011," he said.

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