The Audi R5 is Audi's production version of the Volkswagen BlueSport Concept. This will be one of the three production models to come out of this concept. The design will be inspired by the E-tron concept and the power will come from a five cylinder engine. The R5 will be made for customers who want more than the Audi TT, but can't afford the R8. It is expected to debut in 2014 as a 2015 model.
Volkswagen’s BlueSport concept left zero questions on whether or not it was going to go into production. In fact, Volkswagen announced that it would be available in three different production versions: one for Audi , one for Porsche, and one for Volkswagen, all of them offering different levels of luxury and performance.
Audi’s version will be placed somewhere in the middle, considering both price and performance, and will be aimed at those customers who want more than the TT , but can’t afford an R8 . With an exterior design inspired by the recently launchedE-tron concept , Audi’s model was rumored to be called the R4 . However, new reports suggest that the future sports car will actually be called the R5, taking under consideration the fact that it will use a five-cylinder engine, and not the four pot reserved for the TT.
Audi will offer both coupe and roadster versions, with the roadster being a production version of the E-tron Concept. Expect an official debut sometime in 2014.
UPDATE 05/05/2011: We were all eager to see the future Audi R5, or R4 as it was also rumored to be called, but the German magazine, Auto Motor Und Sport, reports that Audi has dropped plans to build the sports car. The reasoning behind this is that Audi was afraid that it would affect sales for models like the Audi TT and Porsche Cayman . Rumors also state that building the car might have had a very high price and it would have never been a profitable model. Bummer, that design and engine choice would have been awesome.
UPDATE 07/07/2011: New details about the future Audi R5 sports car suggest that the car will also be offered in shooting brake style ’Sportback’ . The new R5 will differ from its Porsche and Volkswagen siblings "by boasting all-wheel drive and the Audi 5-cylinder turbo, which’d position it above the VW and even above the Porsche in pricing." (Fortitude)