2014 Audi Sport Quattro Laserlight Concept
When Audi teased that it would introduce a "mysterious world premier" at the 2014 Consumer Electronics Show this January, it made mention of practically nothing, leaving the constant speculation to all of us and ruining our holidays altogether.
Okay, it wasn’t that bad, but a lot of us publicly wondered what Audi was going to bring to CES in Las Vegas. But the answer to that question may have finally arrived in the form of a new concept that’s not really all that new except for a new technology that could reshape the way Audis are built in the near future.
The concept’s name is the Sport Quattro Laserlight Concept and as its name suggests, it carries the new laser lights technology that seems to be gripping the auto industry these days.
The concept’s exterior looks are pretty similar to the Sport Quattro Concept that was unveiled at the Frankfurt Motor Show last September, and the real hook of this new prototype is well and truly without debate.
It’s the dawn of the laser lights and Audi is showcasing, through this concept, that it has no problem pioneering it the same way it did those LEDs, which seems outdated now by comparison to those lasers.
Click past the jump to read more about the Audi Sport Quattro Laserlight Concept
2014 Audi Sport Quattro Laserlight Concept
Horsepower @ RPM:700
Torque @ RPM:590
0-60 time:3.7 sec.
Top Speed:189 mph
The exterior look of the Sport Quattro Laserlight Concept is almost the same as the Sport Quattro Concept, save for the use of a new Plasma Red color finish. Where the difference lies is in those headlights, with the latter carrying a new technology that even found itself as the name of the concept.
The dual headlights will feature Audi’s future use of laser lighting technology — there goes the boom. Much like BMW’s recent announcement that the i8 will carry laser light technology, so to will Audi and, from what it looks like, the production version of the Quattro model.
Take a look at the Audi Sport Quattro Laserlight Concept’s light configuration and you’ll see two low-profile trapezoidal elements visible within the headlights – the outer one, according to Audi, generates the low beam light using matrix LEDs and an aperture mask, while the inner element produces laser light for high-beam functionality. The laser lights make use of powerful laser diodes, which in size, is significantly smaller than LED diodes, yet produce illumination that’s very nearly twice the range normal LEDs are capable of, and almost three times the luminosity.
For something so small to be able to generate that much energy is something that we need to get used to with these laser lights. It’s going to be the future of lights and Audi, as well as BMW, are in the forefront of it.
As far as the rest of the exterior look of the concept goes, the hexagonal Singleframe grille with a new, sculpted grille insert is still there. As are the two large, vertical blades dividing each of the large air inlets and a carbon-fiber reinforced polymer (CFRP) splitter that is also inspired by the racing world.
Around back, the concept has a spoiler placed on the lower edge of the rear window, a CFRP diffuser with a honeycomb-designed upper section. In true quattro styling form, the taillights feature a rectangular design and two large, oval tailpipes.
Like the body, the interior of the Audi Sport Quattro Laserlight Concept is nearly identical to the one we all saw on the Sport Quattro Concept. That wasn’t done by accident because, as the name of the new concept evidently suggests, the whole showcase of its existence is attributed to those laser lights.
But that doesn’t mean we should ignore the cabin, which is elegant in its own right to warrant recognition.
The multifunction steering wheel, the slender digital instrument cluster and heads-up display are all placed in a manner that gives the driver easy access, while all the ergonomic functions are encircled by a line running just below the windshield wraps.
The concept also has racing-inspired bucket seats with folding backs (hardly a surprise), the aforementioned multifunction sports steering wheel that features a host of buttons and knobs that allow a driver to make full use of the hybrid drive, a red start-stop button, a button for the Audi drive select vehicle handling system and a "View" button to control the Audi virtual cockpit.
Another key feature of the Sport Quattro Laserlight Concept’s interior is the new TFT display, which not only displays on high-resolution and boasts of some pretty cool three-dimensional graphics, but also has a cutting-edge Tegra 30 processor from Nvidia, which processes the graphics. The 3D displays a variety of useful information for the driver, not the least of which is a "Race" mode with central speedometer, track information and a stopwatch and a "Setup" mode with detailed information about numerous race circuits.
Not surprisingly, the drivetrain of the Sport Quattro Laserlight Concept also features he same plug-in hybrid drive that combines a 4.0-liter, twin-turbo V-8 combustion engine with a a disc-shaped electric motor. The V-8 on its own generates a total of 552 horsepower and 516 pound-feet of torque, while the electric motor tacks on another 147 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque, bringing the total at 700 horsepower and 590 pound-feet of torque. This power allows it to hit 60 mph in 3.7 seconds to go with a top speed of 189 mph.
No take yet on the price and since this is a concept, we won’t expect one to come out anytime soon.
It’s no accident that the Audi Sport Quattro Laserlight Concept is touted as Audi’s answer to the BMW i8. It’s a great comparison, considering both vehicles carry roughly the same amount of new technology in their respective packages. Remember, it was only a few weeks ago when BMW announced that the production i8 — set to arrive in 2015 — will also come with the same revolutionary laser light technology that Audi thought wise enough to actually use as the concept’s official name.
There have been talks that a production Sport Quattro will be built soon, albeit one without any hybrid capabilities. Instead, Audi will offer various engines, starting with the base 2.5-liter, five-cylinder engine that delivers a total of 310 horsepower, with the possibility of power jumping to between 340 and 360 horsepower, right around what the production i8 is expected to carry as well.
The new Audi Sport Quattro Laserlight Concept is all about that new technology, an advancement over the existing LED configurations that should be a boon for models that will carry it. The BMW i8 will get it and we won’t be surprised if the production Quattro model will carry it too.
Laser lights are in and it won’t be long before Audi, BMW, and all the other automakers start using it.