Audi Introduces Amazon Music Services On All 2017 and 2018 Models
In what can be considered an early Christmas present from Audi, owners of 2017 and 2018 model year Audis will now have access to Amazon’s music services, including Amazon Music Unlimited and Amazon Prime Music. The two services are now embedded into the infotainment systems of these models, as well as in the Audi MMI Connect smartphone app.
Audi Launches Sport Performance Parts Upgrades For R8 And TT
The automotive market has evolved to the point where carmakers offer a wide range of intermediate versions of their vehicles. Can’t afford a BMW M but you also want something above the standard model? You can get one with the M Sport package. The same goes for various Mercedes-Benz models and, starting 2017, for a couple of Audi vehicles too. The German firm has just launched the Audi Sport Performance Parts line, which adds various upgrades to the R8, TT, TTS and TT RS.
With upgrades for the exterior, interior, suspension, and exhaust system, the Sport Performance Parts package is also a bit different from what you can get from BMW or Mercedes-Benz. Specifically, it’s a retrofit range, so you can purchase it for a car you already own. The bundles are scheduled to go on sale this summer, initially in Germany, but other markets will receive them later on. The good news is that Audi is planning to launch similar ranges for additional models in the future. Find out what these packages include in the review below.
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New Audi A8 Will Launch Company’s New Dashboard Technology
The long-awaited debut of the Audi A8 happens today, and if the hype surrounding the company’s new flagship model is any indication, we could be in store for a few treats. One particular aspect about the new A8 that’s getting a lot of attention is its dashboard, and just in time for the sedan’s debut, Audi Design boss Marc Lichte is throwing more wood on that fire by hinting at what could very well be the latest innovation to come out of Ingolstadt.
In an interview released by Audi itself, Lichte explained that the A8 will hardly feature any buttons or switches in the interior. In their place will be a new touchscreen display integrated into the dashboard, essentially serving as the brain and command center. Lichte’s comments aren’t exactly ground-breaking; we’ve already seen Audi’s new virtual dashboard, albeit in concept guise when it was introduced with the E-tron Quattro Concept back at the 2015 Frankfurt Motor Show. It’s unclear how much of the virtual dashboard from the concept is going to be used in the A8, but remember, that dashboard featured not one, but three different digital displays that were responsible for all of the vehicle’s operations. All signs, including Lichte’s comments, seem to point to the new A8 getting a production version of this virtual dash. How close the production version is to the concept will only be answered when Audi finally pulls the covers off of the new A8. Good thing then that it’s happening today.
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Normally three of the world’s most competitive car companies, Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz have combined forces to purchase the HERE digital mapping service from Finnish telecommunications company, Nokia, for $3 billion.
The three-company consortium will use HERE’s cloud-based maps and other services in conjunction with assisted driving hardware that’s already standard on many cars. The plan is to provide real-time location services and assistance to drivers in the short term, and a platform for fully autonomous car navigation further down the road.
”HERE will be able to offer users a continuously improving product, bringing highly automated driving and location based services a step further,” said Audi, BMW and Mercedes board members in a group statement. “As the volume of anonymized data from the vehicles increases, services will become more convenient, more connected and further tailored to the users’ individual requirements.”
Pending clearance from European antitrust authorities, the deal will see HERE split evenly between the three German car giants, and continue to operate as an independent company with its own autonomous management. The service is currently the largest competitor to Google Maps.
Nokia, meanwhile, has been in the process of successfully pivoting to a service- and infrastructure-based business model, after being thoroughly trounced and driven from a market it once dominated, by Apple’s iPhone and other smart-phone newcomers. Nokia currently acts as a supplier to some of the biggest carriers, including AT&T and China Mobile.
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The big three German luxury carmakers, Mercedes-Benz, Audi and BMW are reportedly nearing a deal with Nokia to purchase the telecomm company’s "Here" mapping and location business. The deal is rumored to cost between 2.5 and 3 billion euros ($2.74 to $3.29 billion) and would provide fully autonomous cars with the means to talk to mobile networks.
That’s the news coming from Reuters, which cites two unidentified sources “familiar with the deal.”
The system would provide self-driving cars with the necessary connectivity to receive real-time data updates, thus enabling them to perform functions like recalculate a route around a traffic jam or accident on the road ahead.
In order to navigate real-world streets, fully autonomous vehicles must process tons of data, including information provided by onboard sensors like radar and lidar. However, in order to function on a long-range scale, the cars must also maintain a connection to constantly updated telecomm infrastructure.
In addition to ownership of all relevant patents, the purchase could also include multi-year commitments to improve the system’s map data quality. The deal is expected to reach finalization by the end of the month, but is by no means guaranteed.
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The Audi RS V-8 engine is a dreamboat. But is that stock Audi RS5’s 4.2-liter V-8 engine with 450 enough to keep pace with twin-turbo BMW’s and Mercedes-Benz super-coupes?
Many auto-bahn drivers would agree that a car like this can do much better than what Audi is offering from factory.
The German tuner McChip-DKR decided the RS5 can be further improved and is offering a tuning kit for pretty much every taste out there. In fact the new kit is offered in three different stages, so you can get the RS5 to the power level you will like - or your wallet will allow.
In stage 1 the V-8’s output was increased up to 550 horsepower, but if you need more you can also opt for a stage 3 of upgrades that will take the final output to an even cooler 600 horsepower. The only problem is that the kit is a little bit expensive and you can pay up to $36,500 for it.
Click past the jump to read more about the Audi RS5 by McChip-DKR.
The currentAudi TT-RS is powered by a 2.5-liter, 5-cylinder engine that delivers a total of 360 horsepower at 5,500 rpm and 343 pound-feet of torque at a super-low 1,650 rpm. Impressive results for such a tiny sports car, but not impressive enough considering that Mercedes obtained an almost similar output from an even slower engine: the 330 HP 2.0-liter four-cylinder set to be used in theA45 AMG.
As a result, Audi decided its time to update this famous engine. The timing’s right, too, because by September 2014, the German automaker will have to comply to EU 6 regulations. In order to achieve this update, Audi will be working on the engine’s combustion processes, while also working on the catalysts and "from there it’s just geometry", according to quattro development boss Stephan Reil, who also added that the "air coming in to the cylinder in rolling waves to produce as little pollution as possible."
During the entire process, Audi will also be working on improving the engine’s performance numbers, especially if you consider that Tobias Moers from AMG claims that the A45 AMG is around six seconds faster around the Nurburgring Nordschleife than the RS3 - which is also using the five-cylinder engine.
The Audi R8 has been an extremely successful car for Audi, as it was originally launched as their first real attempt to compete with modern-day supercars. And boy did they deliver. The R8 is now offered in an array of versions, including the popular R8 V10 which uses the same 5.2-liter engine as the Lamborghini Gallardo LP560-4, but just like every other car, there comes a time when it has to be updated and the facelifted R8 is set to debut in just a few months.
Various spy shots have been captured of the stunning supercar, and the biggest visual changes are set to be its redesigned headlights and taillights. Although they’re expected to largely maintain their shape, the design of the actual lights within will be very different. A difference which will only be clearly noticeable at night, but a change nonetheless.
However, the biggest change will happen underneath, as the 2013 model is set to feature a twin-clutch transmission, if Autocar is to be believed. Up until this point, the R8 has only been offered with either a traditional six-speed manual or a paddle-shift operated ‘box, but the inclusion of a DCT should do wonders for sales of the R8.
Even though the R8’s successor is being prepped for a release in the next two years, Audi went all out to redesign the tub, suspension, and engine carrier to support the larger gearbox, and this has us coming to one solid conclusion. We’re doubtful Audi would go to that much effort just to get a few more sales and keep up with the competition, and instead believe that the R8’s successor will make use of the same tub and S-tronic dual-clutch gearbox.
Additionally, the R8 V10’s engine is set for a slight horsepower increase up from 525BHP to 540BHP, but it’s currently unclear if this engine will be retained in the future model.
Either way, it’s great to see Audi updating the R8 to keep up with the times and we’re extremely excited about the 2014 or 2015 model also, which is set to be a true evolution of the car.
The Q5 is about to receive an update, just like all of the other models in the Audi line-up, and that new facelift version of the SUV has been caught testing yet again during these fierce winter conditions. The prototype now has a white exterior paint finish, but our spy photographers were also able to get close enough to take a picture of the interior for the first time. The interior is fully covered which can only mean that it will get a major refresh.
As far as the exterior is concerned, the Audi Q5 facelift will receive a new hexagon grille and added chrome around the air intakes in the front bumper, even though they are black on this prototype. Changes to the technical parts of the SUV will include new electromechanical steering, new damper settings, and a revised rear suspension.
The current Q5 is only being offered with one gasoline engine and two TDI units, but expect to see a few more changes under the hood when the facelift arrives on the market in 2013.
In the past, Audi has dazzled the crowds in Detroit with a number of vehicles, but in 2012, they have opted to only bring a Q3 Vail Concept equipped for the winter season. The concept was named after the famous winter sports venue in the United States and has been designed for young fans of winter sports who love skiing or snowboarding.
The Audi Q3 Vail is painted in a very cool Energy Red combined with add-on body parts in a matte gray quartz-based paint and vertical struts made from aluminum. The most striking elements, however, are the flared wheel arches and running boards, which Audi will incorporate into the extensive range of Q3 accessories. The front roof-rail support integrates compact, energy-efficient, wide-angled LED lights that illuminate the area around the Audi Q3 Vail. The concept sits on 8.5 J x 20 five-arm wheels.
For the interior, Audi is offering a combination of black, gray, and red. The headlining is made from titanium gray Alcantara and large parts of the interior, including the carpet, are black and edged with narrow strips of red velvet-finish leather.
The Q3 Vail Concept is powered by a 2.5-liter five-cylinder TFSI engine with direct injection and turbocharging that generates an output of 314 HP and 295.02 lb-ft of torque. The power is transferred to the quattro permanent all-wheel drive system via a seven-speed S tronic transmission. The concept will sprint from 0 to 60 mph in 5.5 seconds and can hit a top speed of 162.80 mph.
Audi may be sending out the current generation TT-RS with one final special edition - the TT-RS Plus - but they are introducing another with that same package. At least, that is what a leaked document is suggesting.
Back in June 2011, Audi reported that all of the 2,700 units of the highly anticipated RS3 Sportback had been sold out, but if this document is to be taken seriously, then customers may have another chance to snag the sports hatch in an even cooler package. The RS3 Plus will take the turbocharged 2.5-liter five-cylinder engine - also found in the TT-RS - and jump-start it by 20 HP, leaving it with a total of 360 HP and 342 lb-ft. of torque. And just like with the TT-RS Plus, the RS3 Plus will be a few pounds lighter, thus making it a little bit faster. Expect to see different carbon fiber elements as well, most likely a specially designed wheel and a fixed rear wing.
The Audi RS3 Plus will be unveiled in May 2012, a month after the TT-RS Plus.
The Audi R8 has been one of the most popular sportscars in the past few years, particularly because when it was first unveiled at the 2006 Paris Auto Show, it came with a cutting edge design that propelled the German automaker’s first true sportscar into the stratosphere. However, the popular belief is that while other brands have introduced fresh takes on their exotics, the R8 has remained virtually the same. What this means is that it just might be time for Audi to give their supercar a much-needed successor.
Nothing has been announced yet, but a leaked photo courtesy of Fourtitude.com has people wondering whether a new R8 will arrive sooner than any of us thought. Looking at the photo, you wouldn’t be remiss if you thought that what you’re looking at is the new front end of the R8. The changes are noticeably different, particularly Audi’s new hexagonal front grille and a new razor-thin lights set-up that stretches from the quarter panel all the way to the grille.
In terms of the powertrain, there’s word that Audi will continue to offer V8 and V10 engine options for the R8, to go with Quattro all-wheel drive. Some have indicated, however, that prototypes of the car have been seen using 2.5 and 3.0-liter TFSI engines. Whether these speculations have merits to them or not, one thing that’s becoming evident is that the R8 needs a make-over.
And if this photo is any indication of what the next-generation R8 is going to look like, then we’re getting ready to have our heads blown off.
Audi USA has just posted some interesting news on their Facebook account: the Audi Exclusive custom shop is offering customers the chance to customize their very won R8 in any way they want. This means customers will get to choose any color imaginable for the paint or any combination for the interior leather.
Want a saddle brown paint job with a magnolia white sideblade? We question your taste, but it’s still possible. How about a Misano Red paint job with a carbon fiber sideblade? Now, we’re talking.
The full line of interior options includes: Cognac Brown Fine Nappa leather with Crimson Red stitching, Classic Red Fine Nappa leather seats with Alabaser White stitching, Black Fine Nappa leather with Cognac Brown Fine Nappa Leather Seat inserts, lower door panels, floor mat piping, Saddle Brown Fine Nappa Leather with Magnolia White stitching, Magnolia White carpet, and floor mats with Saddle Brown piping.
All you have to do is to let your imagination go wild, and, of course, buy a R8.