Rumors about an Audi R4 sports car have been circulating for a very long time now. Audi has denied its existence a few times, but Volkswagen announcing three different production versions of the BlueSport concept has brought the R4 back out on the table. The first rumors suggested the model would be revealed in 2010, but that was obviously not the case. The R4 will actually be revealed in 2014 as a 2015 model and will share its platform with the new entry-level Porsche and Volkswagen two-seaters.
When talking with AutoCar about the new R4, an Audi source said: "We have not abandoned plans for a roadster along the lines of the E-tron Spyder. We have reached a stage where we are moving forward and are now in the process of progressing the business case further, but it won’t go on sale until after the third-generation TT."
This statement can be translated into the fact that the R4 won’t hit the market until late 2014 and it will be designed in such a manner that it won’t hurt the sales of both the Audi TT and the Audi R8 supercar, meaning it will be placed somewhere in the middle.
UPDATE 10/26/2011: During an interview with British magazine, AutoExpress, an Audi insider has confirmed that the future R4 will feature both a 2.5-liter five-cylinder turbo producing around 400bhp and a hybrid powertrain: "Even in our sports car ranges, customer demand for efficiency is increasing." The model will be offered in both roadster and coupe versions and Audi hopes to sell around 10,000 units a year.
Hit the jump to read more about the 2015 Audi R4.
Exterior and Interior
Despite previous rumors, the R4 will only be offered in a roadster version and will take its design inspiration from the E-tron Spyder concept matched up with design lines that will also be used for the next generation R8 supercar. The model will be built on the Volkswagen Group’s new MMB platform and will be placed between the Volkswagen BlueSport model and the new entry level Porsche in terms of luxury and sportiness.
New rumors suggest that the R4 will share major elements of its front-end structure with the third-generation Boxster, but in a radically different way.
Initial rumors suggested that the R4 would be offered with a V6 engine with an output of around 280 and 300 HP. The actual engine lineup for the new R4 will consist of three different engines. The first is a modified version of the current 2.0-liter four-cylinder turbocharged engine featuring a new variable cam and valve lift control system and an output of about 280 HP. The second choice is a turbocharged 2.5-liter five-cylinder engine - the same engine found in the TTRS - with an output of about 350 HP. The final engine is a twin-turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder diesel with an output of about 200bhp and 295lb ft. Even though the inspiration for the R4 comes from the E-tron Spyder concept, the new model will not come sporting an electric motor.
Transmission options include a standard six-speed manual and a seven-speed S-tronic dual-clutch unit.
The new Audi R4 is set to be revealed in 2014 and will go on sale in 2015 for about $40,000.
The main competitors for the future Audi R4 will be the production versions of the BlueSport Concept. All of the BlueSport models will be built on the same platform, but will deliver different levels of luxury and performance.
The Porsche model will take its design cues from the iconic 1953 550 Spyder and will be offered with a twin-turbocharged engine with an output of about 380 HP. It is also believed that the Porsche model will be called the 550 as a tribute to the classic model. Prices will be in the $52K area.
The Volkswagen model will, in fact, be the only version taking its design inspiration from the BlueSport concept. It will feature a turbocharged 1.4-liter four-cylinder engine with an output of about 170 HP. This will be the cheapest version with prices starting from around $30K.
Great design lines
Will benefit from Audi’s latest technologies
In any form, it will get a turbocharged engine
Everyone has waited entirely too long for this model