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Audi Car Parts

Audi AG is the car manufacturer from Germany and the products of this manufacturer are various starting from super mini cars to crossovers SUV’s and the prices for them are also various so the manufacturer allows everyone to buy an Audi car. Owned 99% by Volkswagen, Audi is famous for its exclusivist cars.

Because of the fact that this brand is European and because the price of it in the American continent is a little higher than in Europe, the Audi car parts are also a little more difficult to be easily found all over the places. Because local stores can’t assure all the time the auto parts for your Audi, the perfect way to find the parts for this car make is online way. Online stores are various and they are separated in two categories: new and used Audi car parts online stores.

Audi Car Parts

For the new Audi parts, there are several online stores that can assure the car parts for all car makes and models, for example Advance Auto Parts online store (this is also assuring service for your Audi), but this is not a specialized store in Audi car parts. An online store with only Audi and Volkswagen car parts is Maple Wood Audi from 2450 North Highway 61 Maplewood, MN 55109. But, in order to avoid visit their local store, their website is also an online store. They are the biggest dealer of Audi cars and Audi car parts. Their online store is offering besides auto parts, new and old inventory, news about Audi cars and financial opportunity for buying an Audi or some parts that are too expensive and you can’t afford buy them with cash. You have available an online chat directly on the website so you can ask for online help in order to find the proper car parts for your Audi. Mistakes can be done, so you better ask for their consultancy.

Used Audi parts can also be found online. There are several online stores with used Audi car parts, but there are only few that can assure all the time the certitude of permanent stocks. This is named 4 Used Audi Parts and it has available a lot of option for Audi owners on its website. From engines to alternators, this online stores is offering your car parts for all Audi models and years, you just have to know for sure from the beginning what you are searching for. If you are not sure that your search can be precise, you can call them for free at 1-800-641-6038 and they will help you find exactly the parts you are searching. All their products have a warranty period and this period is different from one product to another. You can also return the product after you receive them in 15 days if you are not satisfied with them or if they didn’t send you the right product.

So, no matter if you want a new or used Audi car part, you always can search online because online stores are opened 24/7 and they help you save a lot of time.

Rumors – Audi R4 Axed, A2 Delayed

Audi e-tron

According to a recent report from Auto Motor and Sport, the German automaker Audi has decided to kill the highly-anticipated R4 model due to the reason that it might steal customers of the TT and Porsche’s Boxster and Cayman models. In addition, the Volkswagen Bluesport variant would likely have been way too expensive to be competitive.

From the same report, we find out that the revival of the A2 model has been postponed for 2016. Nothing is certain at the moment, but it seems that VW desires to build the car on a group platform, for reducing production costs, instead of a bespoke chassis.

We certainly hope that these rumors will turn out to be untrue, especially the ones regarding the Audi R4, but I’m sure that there are many among you that wish to see a new generation of the A2, and this time, hopefully, it won’t be that awful as far as the design is concerned.

We’ll keep you posted once more information occurs. Stay tuned.

Source: Auto Motor and Sport via WCF

[Concept Design] How would Audi TT’s and Bugatti Veyron’s kid look like: Audi OniX

Audi TT and Bugatti Veyron ar 2 of the most loved and wanted cars in the world (of course, both of them in their own price brackets). But what would a combination of the two look like? Well, some guy had the idea of designing a possible result and here it is: Audi OniX.

What do you think about it? Tell us in the comments below, like it on Facebook or Tweet on twitter :) . Also, visit its creator on his deviant art page to enjoy his other creations.

Audi OniX Concept Car, the child of Audi TT and Bugatti Veyron

Preview – 2011 Chicago Auto Show PART 1

The 2011 edition of the Chicago Auto Show will open its doors on February 9th, lasting until the 20th of the month. Here are some of the most important cars that will be exhibited at this important automotive event.

2011 Audi TT-RS

Audi will be bringing three new production models in the United States: TT-RS, 2012 Audi A6 and the 2012 Audi A7 Sportback. The sexy TT-RS is the most powerful and expensive TT model and will be offered with a 5-cylinder 2.5-liter supercharged power unit that outputs 340 hp. At first, the car will be sold with only a 6-speed manual gearbox. Later on, the German automaker will introduce other transmissions.

The A6 grabbed the EyesOn Design award a couple of weeks ago at the Detroit Auto Show and will feature a V6 3.0-liter supercharged engine which will probably be linked to an 8-speed automatic gearbox. The A7 Sportback will be offered with the same engine that churns 333 hp and will be linked to a 7-speed dual-clutch automated-manual gearbox.

2012 BMW 1-Series Convertible

BMW will take to the Chicago Auto Show two of their newest models: the 2012 1-Series and the gorgeous 2012 6-Series. The first one will be available with new styling features that should be popular among American customers. The 128i and the 135i models will carry the 3.0-liter engine which is available in the 3-Series. The 128i will pack 230 hp under its hood while the 135i will be able to output 300 hp. If this isn’t enough, you could get the 1-Series M-coupe which will offer you 335 ponies to play around with.

If you like to drive with the top down, the 6-Series Convertible is the way to go. The car will feature a powerful V8 4.4-liter engine that cranks up 400 hp and is mated to BMW’s 8-speed automatic gearbox.

2012 Buick Verano

For those of you that prefer a car from the domestic market, the 2012 Buick Verano might be what you need. Placed below the Regal, the Verano will feature a 4-cylinder 2.4-liter engine that outputs 177 hp and is linked to a 6-speed automatic gearbox. A couple of months later, the Verano will be available with a 2.0-liter.

2012 Chevrolet Sonic

Aveo is dead, long live the Sonic. Chevrolet will be taking to Chicago their new car which will come with a 1.8-liter engine that produces 135 hp and is mated to either a 5-speed manual (as standard) or with a 6-speed automatic transmission. The car will also be available with a 1.4-liter turbocharged power unit that will be linked to a 6-speed manual gearbox, outputting 138 hp.

2011 Chrysler Town & Country

Being a North American auto show, it is obvious why all of the local automakers will be bringing their latest models. Chrysler will roll out the 200, 300 and the all-new Town & Country models. The first one will be the company’s new mid-size sedan, replacing the now defunct Sebring. As far as the engine choices are concerned, the 200 can be fitted with a 4-cylinder 2.4-liter, mated to a 4-speed / 6-speed automatic gearbox. The high-end 200 model will be equipped with a more powerful V6 3.6-liter that produces 283 hp, linked to a 6-speed automatic gearbox.

Presented at the Detroit Auto Show, the Chrysler 300 will be shown at Chicago next week. It will be available in three versions, as follows: Touring, Limited and the 300C. The first two versions will pack a V6 3.6-liter engine that produces 292 hp while the 300C will get a massive V8 5.7-liter that is good for 370 hp. The Town & Country will be available with a V6 3.6-liter engine which will be mated to a 6-speed automatic gearbox. The model will be available with the following trim levels: Touring, Touring L and Limited.

2011 Dodge Durango

Dodge will be bringing the Charger, Avenger, Journey and the Durango. The first one will feature two new sets of engines for the SE and R/T models. The SE will pack a V6 3.6-liter power unit that outputs 292 hp while the R/T will get a more powerful 5.7-liter HEMI V8 that will offer 370 ponies. Both of the engines will be linked to a 5-speed automatic gearbox.

The Avenger will be available in four trim levels: Express, Mainstreet, Lux and R/T. The car will have a 4-cylinder 2.4-liter engine that will output 173 hp, fitted with a 4-speed automatic transmission for the Express trim while the Mainstreet and Lux get a 6-speed automatic gearbox. The R/T will benefit from a V6 3.6-liter engine with 283 hp and a 6-speed automatic gearbox.

The Journey is a crossover/SUV which will be available in a 5-seater or 7-seater configuration. The model will be offered in five different trim levels: Express, Mainstreet, R/T, Crew and Lux. The entry-level Express will get a 4-cylinder 2.4-liter engine that offers 173 hp and will be mated to a 4-speed automatic transmission. The rest of the trims will get a V6 3.6-liter that outputs 283 hp, linked to a 6-speed automatic gearbox.

The Durango will be available in three different trim levels: Express, Crew and Citadel. All of them will benefit from the same power unit, which will be a V6 3.6-liter that produces 290 hp. The customers that choose the Crew or the Citadel trim levels can get a more powerful engine, in the shape of a 5.7 HEMI V8, good for 360 hp. Regardless of the engine, all cars will get a 5-speed automatic gearbox.

2012 Fiat 500

After a couple of years of waiting, Fiat will be delivering the lovely 500 model to the US market. For this reason, they will exhibit the car at the upcoming Chicago Auto Show. The model will be available in three trim levels: Pop, Sport and Lounge. The engine will be a 4-cylinder 1.4-liter that will output 101 hp and will be linked to either a 5-speed manual gearbox or a 6-speed automatic transmission. Later on, Fiat will launch the 2-door convertible 500C model.

Join us tomorrow for the second part of the article.

Audi R8 Sport Wheels Unveiled

Audi R8 Sport Wheels

A new tuning program has been developed for the beautiful Audi R8, this time by the German engineers from Sport Wheels. This package offers a new set of wheels along with performance upgrades and other visual updates. The performance pack of the program includes a level 2 software optimization, along with a customized muffle with throttle system and center tube outlet. With this modification, the Audi R8 can develop 600 hp and 580 Nm of torque.

The car rides on Jofiel X black/red wheels that measure 9×20 and are covered by the Dunlop Sport Maxx GT 235/30-20er tires for the R8’s front axle and 11×21 rims wrapped in 295/25-21er tires for the rear. In addition, the car packs a Variant 3 KW HLS 4 aluminum coil-over suspension.

As far as the aerodynamics are concerned, the Audi R8 is made out of high-strength uberlight carbon steel which can be found on the rear spoiler (with the integrated diffuser), rear apron and the front bumper (with the grill).

Audi R8 Sport Wheels

The price for the front bumper (with the grill), the cooling ducts and the ribs made in carbon will set you back 7,799 Euros. The rear diffuser costs 3,799 Euros while the rear spoiler is 1,990 Euros. The aforementioned level 2 software optimization can be purchased only along with the customized muffler and has a list price of 4,599 Euros. Those wheels cost an additional 4,599 Euros. For those of you that really want the ultimate Audi R8, you have to say goodbye to 21,990 Euros for the MOV’IT-CER ceramic brake calipers. The aluminum coil-over suspension costs another 7,349 Euros.

Audi R8 Sport Wheels

We will let you do the math.

Audi And BMW Will Expand Their Factories This Year

According to Bloomberg.com, it seems that BMW, Mercedes and Audi AG (the world’s three largest luxury-car manufacturers), will expand their factory units in 2011 in order to keep up with the increasing customer demand.

Audi is targeting to overtake BMW as the largest manufacturer of premium cars by 2015 and for this reason it plans to increase the production of their cars and sport utility vehicles to more than the 1.15 million produced last year.

Mercedes and BMW have just about the same plans as Volkswagen AG’s Audi, with increased output at the Stuttgart and respectively Leipzig plant.

Juergen Pieper is a Frankfurt-based analyst for Bankhaus Metzler and he said that “the top three are poised for further growth”. “The momentum in luxury markets will continue this year and also in 2012.” He also recommends buying BMW, Daimler and VW shares.

This targeted increase in production output is directly linked to the continuous expansion of China’s market which became in the last years one of the two largest automotive markets in the entire world, after United States. To satisfy this increasing request, Audi is planning on spending $15.7 billion (11.6 billion Euros) through 2015 on plants as well as new models. Since 2009, BMW has already spent 1.5 billion Euros for the German plants and Daimler is at the moment building a small-car plant in Hungary for which they will invest a total of 800 million Euros.

BMW plans on selling more than 1.5 million units of their BMW, Rolls Royce and Mini models in 2011. In order to prepare the production of the highly-anticipated Mega City electric vehicle which is due in 2013, BMW is spending 400 million Euros at its factory unit located in Leipzig, Germany. The company also announced that it will roll out 20 new models by 2015 while Audi affirmed that they will launch 13 new models and upgraded cars in 2011.

As far as Volkswagen is concerned, they plan on investing more than 5 billion Euros for two of their factories in Germany, the one in Neckarsulm and the other in Ingolstadt, where the new Audi A6 model will be made. In addition, Audi said that pretty soon they will begin working on expanding the output of their factory located in Gyor, Hungary to 125,000 units per year.

In 2010, BMW finished a $750 million expansion of its United States factory, located in Spartanburg, South Carolina, in order to create the facilities for making the facelift version of the X3 SAV. The company has plans of increasing its production in South Africa, India and most important, China.

Source: BMWBlog via Bloomberg.com

West Coast Customs and Monster Cable Audi R8 Tron

Audi R8 Tron

Here is another example of how to ruin a perfectly awesome car – the 2011 Audi R8. The guys over at West Coast Customs (who in the past have made some great cars) and Monster Cable decided to add a TRON flavor to the beautiful R8. The TRON-themed motorcycle was pretty cool but this Audi R8 looks awful in my opinion, though I have to admit l like how it looks during the night with those cool lights.

Audi R8 Tron

Except for those glowing rims, the E-TRON Audi R8 has also glowing air vents and a glowing back seat. By far the worst thing about the car would have to be the chrome finish which has nothing to do with the movie. I think that it if didn’t had this chrome finish I might have liked it but with it, this Audi R8 looks terrible.

Audi R8 Tron

In my opinion the car would have looked a lot better with a matte black finish instead of this “bling-bling” chrome that makes it look like a pimp car, not something inspired from Tron.

The good thing about the car is that West Coast Customs didn’t change anything under the hood and the R8 still packs that same rocking engine.

Photos via TopSpeed.com

Audi A6 Wins EyesOn Design Award

2012 Audi A6

The new generation of the Audi A6 won the EyesOn Design Award at the 2011 Detroit Auto Show. Thanks to its elegant yet sporty looks emphasized by the sweeping roofline, long engine hood and the prominent lines, the A6 allowed Audi to win its fourth award in the last three years. In addition, the car won the “Best Production Vehicle” award at Detroit, increasing Audi’s position as one of the most inspired automakers when it comes down to design.

Audi is a regular customer of this award as in 2009 the German automaker won the “Best Production Car Design” award with its beautiful R8 V10 car and the “Best Concept Vehicle” for the Sportback Concept which later on stood as a reference for the A7 Sportback production model. Last year at the 2010 NAIA, the automaker won the title for the “Best Production Car Design” with its A8 luxury sedan.

The new Audi A6 will go on sale in the United States this fall as a 2012 model. The car will feature a body made out of aluminum and high-tech steels, making it not only light, but also safe and stiff. For more information about the 2012 A6, read here.

2012 Audi A6 Launched

2012 Audi A6

Audi decided to roll out the big guns at the 2011 Detroit Auto Show and presented the 2012 A6 model in all its glory, along with the hybrid version. Following the design lines of its bigger brother, the A8, the mid-range sedan is without any doubt a very beautiful car. Measuring 16.14 ft long and 6.14 ft wide, but only 4.79 ft high, it has the best sporty proportions in this segment. The dynamic overall look of the car was created by the prominent lines on the flank, the sweeping roofline and the long engine hood. In my opinion, it is one of the best looking cars launched at Detroit, along with Hyundai’s Veloster three-door coupe. Personally I like the hybrid’s color better than the red of the regular model, but it is only a matter of taste.

The 2012 A6 will be available with two gas engines and three diesel power units. The fuel consumption through the entire model line has decreased to max 19% in comparison with the outgoing generation. One of the most interesting engines would have to be the 2.0 TDI (linked to a manual gearbox) which will do 48 mpg (4.9 L / 100 km) and emit only 129g CO2 km. The engines available for the new A6 develop between 177 hp (130 kW) and 300 hp (220 kW), all of them benefiting from the Start/Stop function, thermal management concept and energy recovery system.

2012 Audi A6

Regarding the drivertains available, customers will have to choose from one of the following: 6-speed manual gearbox, continuously variable multitronic and the all-new Sporty S tronic. Depending on the selection of the power unit, the 2012 A6 is available with either a front wheel drive or with the proprietary Quattro permanent all-wheel drive. For the top-of-the-line power units, the German manufacturer will offer an optional sport differential.

The 3.0 TDI engine is capable of outputting 245 hp and 368.78 lb-ft of torque between 1,400 and 3,250 revs. 0-60 mph is done in only 6.1 seconds, onto a limited top speed of 155 mph. The most powerful gasoline engine will be the 3.0 TFSI V6 that will output 300 hp and 324 lb-ft of torque. It will need only 5,5 seconds to reach 60 mph and to speed will be 155 mph. The car will do 26 mpg and emit 190g of CO2.

2012 Audi A6 Hybrid

Later on, Audi will be introducing the A6 Hybrid which will be the second hybrid model after the Q5 hybrid Quattro. It will feature a 2.0 TFSI 211 hp engine that will work close in hand with the electric motor, capable of outputting 45 hp and 155 lb-ft of torque. The compact lithium-ion battery will be installed in the crash-protected area of the luggage compartment and will be capable of providing 1.3 kWh of nominal power, generating 39 kW.

The hybrid version of the A6 will be able reach 62 mph running only on electric mode and on a constant speed of 37 mph, it will have a range of 3 km. It will need 7.3 seconds for the 0-60 mph sprint, onto a top speed of 147 mph. The car will do 37 mpg and its CO2 emissions stand at 142 g / km.

As standard, the 2012 Audi A6 will come with MMI radio complete with a generous 6.5-inch monitor, adaptive brake light, tire pressure monitoring system, start-stop button, front center armrest,  two-zone air conditioning system, alloy wheels and Audi’s pre sense basic system. As far as safety is concerned, the car packs two front side and head airbags along with four belt tensioners plus Audi’s head restraint system.

2012 Audi A6 Hybrid

Some of the most important optional features of the A6 include: the jaw-dropping 1,300-watt Bang & Olufsen sound system, TV module, digital radio tuner, Bose surround sound, Bluetooth car phone and others as well. In addition, the A6 can be fitted with xenon plus LED headlights with LED taillights, plus adaptive light with the headlight range control.

The car will be available for sale in a couple of weeks at a base price of 38,500 Euros (in Germany).

Driving The 2011 Audi Q7 TDI

2011 Audi Q7 TDI

The Audi Q7 TDI is one of the few vehicles that were able to change the perception that diesel-powered cars are stinky, crude and black smoke-spewers. The 2011 model is better than its predecessor and the biggest improvement is the 8-speed automatic gearbox which replaces the 6-speed unit from the 2010 model. With this new gearbox, the Q7 shifts more smoothly and seamless. The engine is the same as before and still is capable of offering a pleasurable drive. Although it is a diesel, once you fire it up, you will not be bothered by the noise which is very perceptible in other diesel-powered cars. Upon start you can barely hear it and it gets even more silent as the power unit warms up.

The TDI engine offers 406 pound-feet of torque at only 1750 rpm which means that you will not have to hit the gas pedal very hard to pass in traffic or accelerate. The steering of this SUV is typical for an Audi as it offers all the accuracy you could want without feeling even a bit nervous. The car will do just fine on straight roads and on highways but once you take it for some off-road adventure; the Q7 will feel like an athletic sedan that packs lots of torque.

The 2011 Audi Q7 TDI will do 0-60 mph in 8.6 seconds which isn’t very bad taking into consideration the fact that its gas-powered brother (4.2-liter V8) will do it in 7.6 seconds. The 2011 model is 27 pounds easier than the 2010 VW Touareg TDI, despite the fact that it has a third row of seats. Although the VW is a little bit heavier, it is in fact faster than the Audi as the Touareg will do the 0-60 mph sprint in 8.1 seconds. If you are not interested in the TDI versions of the Q7, your gas-powered choices are the V6 3.0-liter that outputs 272 hp (which replaced the 3.6-liter V6) and the more powerful supercharged V6 3.0-liter (which replaced the 4.2-liter V8) that churns 333 hp, both linked to an 8-speed automatic gearbox.

2011 Audi Q7 TDI Interior

Interior-wise, the 2011 Q7 TDI from Audi comes with high-quality leather, comfortable and supportive seats as well as a clean layout. For the new model, the SUV packs a panorama roof and HD radio. The A-pillars are a little bit thick and will reduce the front side visibility but nothing to serious. If you haven’t been inside a Q7 you will have problems opening the glovebox as there is no lever or handle. The glovebox can be opened by pushing a button located next to the MMI / navigation screen. Inside it you will find a useful iPod connection.

With this engine, the Q7 TDI will do 17 mpg in the city and 25 mpg on the highway and has a fuel range of about 660 miles. It is without any doubt, a modern SUV that handles very well and is both fast and efficient while at the same time keeping the engine noise to a minimum.

2011 Audi Q7 TDI

All of these goodies come at a considerable price. The entry-level model costs $51,450 and comes with 19-inch rims with all-season tires, Audi Parking System, chrome accent package with full paint finish, power tailgate, 7-passenger seating, leather seating surfaces, heated 12-way power front seats, LED taillights, HomeLink universal remote, Bluetooth mobile phone preparation and HomeLink universal remote control. The Premium Plus trim will set you back $57,450 and offers MMI Navigation plus, BOSE Surround Sound, Audi parking system plus with rearview camera, Audi Xenon plus headlights with automatic self-leveling and integrated LED daytime running lights, driver memory and panorama sunroof. The top-of-the-line model is the Prestige and packs 20-inch rims with all-season tires, adaptive headlights, advanced key, side assist, ventilated front seats, warm weather package and power adjustable steering column. The Prestige trim is available for $63,450.

Top 10 Releases In 2010 Part 2

In the first part of the article we presented the Volkswagen Golf GTI, the Porsche Boxster / Cayman, Mazda 3, Mazda Miata and the Cadillac CTS / CTS-V. In the second part we will be reviewing the remaining five cars from our top. We start with the Ford Fusion Hybrid and see where the rest of the top takes us.

Ford Fusion Hybrid

Ford Fusion Hybrid

Although it might come as a surprise for many of you, the Fusion Hybrid from Ford is by far the most advanced car in our top 10. With the electric power engaged, the car is able to reach a respectable to speed of 47 mph. The powertrain of this hybrid is not only compact but very refined, you can barely hear it. As far as the in-car entertainment is concerned, the Fusion Hybrid is packed with the Sirius Travel Link that offers info regarding traffic, sports, and weather and movie times. The car was designed in order to keep the distraction level of the driver to a minimum as all the computer functions are voice controlled. The car is great fun to drive and something new in comparison to what you are accustomed to. The handling, the ride are all strong points of the Ford. The car is equipped with a 2.5-liter inline-4 DOHC 16-valve conventional engine that is capable of producing 156 hp and 136 lb-ft. Being a hybrid; it also features a AC permanent-magnet synchronous electric motor that offers 106 hp and 166 lb-ft. The transmission of the Fusion Hybrid is a continuously variable automatic type. The base price for the car is $28,350. According to the EPA ratings, the car will do 41 mpg city / 36 mpg highway, one of the best in its class as far as fuel efficiency.

Honda Accord

Honda Accord Sedan

Honda Accord Coupe

The 2.4-liter standard engine of the Accord is surprisingly very quick, offering plenty of performance for a car from this class. The automatic gearbox never draws attention to itself and works just as you might expected. If you don’t like the sedan version, maybe the coupe draws your attention with its sleek exterior looks and the powerful V6 engine capable of producing 271 hp, more than enough for most of us. With this engine, the Accord Coupe is able to do the 0-60 mph sprint in 5.6 seconds. The base price of the sedan version is $21,765 while the coupe can be yours for $30,015 with the entry-level trim. The transmissions available for the Accord include the 5 or 6-speed manual and the modern 5-speed automatic gearbox. According to the EPA ratings, the car will do 17-22 mpg city / 25-31 mpg highway.

Honda Fit

Honda Fit

Why another Honda? The Fit is very fun to drive, quite affordable and the cockpit will invade you with high quality materials that you will only find in more expensive cars of the upper segment. Not only it has a very reasonable price, but also it is very cheap to operate, making it a very wise decision for budget-minded drivers. The 117 hp 1.5-liter power unit isn’t something to brag about, but it is quite enough for the Fit. If you want a car from the upper segment and cannot afford it, the Honda Fit is the perfect “imitation” of a more expensive car. The 117 hp power unit can be fitted with the following transmissions: standard 5-speed manual, 5-speed automatic with manumatic shifting and 5-speed automatic for a more relaxing drive. According to the EPA ratings, the Honda Fit does 27-28 mpg city / 33-35 mpg highway.

Audi S4

Audi S4

A top without at least one car from Germany would not be fair, wouldn’t it? When it was first introduced in 2004, the Audi S4 was equipped with a V8 engine, but for the 2010 model, it lost 2 cylinders, however this does not mean that the car is underpowered. On the contrary, the supercharged V6 packs 333 hp which is only 7 hp less in comparison to the V8 power unit. If you want extreme driving pleasures, go for the $1100 torque-vectoring rear differential, which makes the Audi S4 an oversteering titan. In a recent test, the Audi S4 performed better than the BMW 335i, although it weighs about 400 pounds more and offers just about the same performance figures. The engine of the car is linked to a 7-speed dual-clutch automated manual or a standard 6-speed manual gearbox. The base price for the 2010 Audi S4 is $46,725. According to the EPA ratings, the S4 will do 18 mpg city / 27-28 mpg highway.

BMW 3-Series / M3

BMW 3-Series

BMW M3

Another German car, this time the BMW 3-Series / M3. You can go for the 328i model that packs 230 hp and will do 30+ mpg on the highway or for the more powerful M3 variant, a car that is equipped with a remarkable V8 engine that is capable of outputting 414 hp @ 8400 rpm. The M3 needs only about 4 seconds to do the 0-60 mph sprint. The 3-Series is a very comprehensive range, the car is offered with a coupe, sedan, wagon, four-door M3 configuration plus a folding-hardtop convertible for summer days. The base price for the 3-Series is $33,675 while the M3 has a starting price of $69,025. The engines can be fitted with one of the following transmissions: 6-speed manual, 6-speed automatic with manumatic shifting and a modern 7-speed dual-clutch automated manual gearbox. According to the EPA ratings, the BMW 3-Series will do 13-23 mpg city / 20-36 mpg highway.

Other cars that didn’t made it into our top include the Mercedes-Benz E-Class, the beautiful Nissan 370Z, Chevrolet Camaro, Porsche 911 Carrera, Hyundai Genesis Coupe and the Lexus IS Convertible.

Picking out any of these cars from our top is a good idea as they all combine the most important ingredients of a car: fun to drive, comfy interior, a bundle of safety features and more than decent powertrains, especially for the sportier cars like the M3 or the S4.

Audi R18 Launched

Audi R18

Las week the German automaker Audi officially unveiled the new R18 model which will begin its testing on April 24th, 2011 at the famous Le Mans circuit, before its first race scheduled for May 8th, 2011 at the 6-hour race at Spa-Francorchamps. One month later, on June 11-12, the R18 will participate in the 40-hour endurance race at Le Mans. With this new model, Audi is targeting a tenth Le Mans success for next year. The development of the car started in 2009 and the R18 features a single component carbon fiber monocoque along with “1” shaped LED taillights, to inspire association with the company’s history brand logo.

According to Dr. Wolfgang Ullrich, Head of Audi Motorsport – “in the future, aerodynamic efficiency will be even more important at Le Mans than it was in the past. A closed car has clear advantages in this respect. Our computer simulations have been confirmed in the wind tunnel and during initial track test.

With the 2011 Le Mans, automakers will have to use smaller power units in comparison to the ones used before as the new rules target a substantial power reduction, a trend that will be followed by other motorsport categories in order to lower the overall costs of the competitions. With the 2011 model, Audi equipped the R18 with the 3.7-liter V6 engine that retains the diesel concept that made Audi victorious back in 2006. Ulrich Baretzky, Head of Engine Development at Audi Sport, stated that “from our point of view, the TDI continues to be the most efficient technology. There are good reasons why the share of TDI units among Audi’s production models is as high as it is.”

The aerodynamics package and the chassis of the R18 were inspired by the R8 production model, the R10 TDI and the R15 TDI. The R18 benefits from identically sized front & rear wheels, allowing a more balanced weight distribution. One of the many technical highlights of the car are the headlights, which for the first time in a Le Mans car are powered entirely by LEDs. It is a new generation of headlights resulted from the close collaboration between Audi Sport and Technical Development – TE, a division of Audi AG. With the introduction of these headlights to a Le Mans car, it will open the doors for production models which will be equipped with the same technology in the near future.

Audi R18

The automaker’s team for Le Mans will be Audi Sport Team Joest and will consist of 3 R18s. Besides Le Mans, the team will participate in the ILMC championship- Intercontinental Le Mans Cup which consists of seven endurance races (including the 24h Le Mans) on three continents. The complete list of Audi’s motorsport events for next year is:

Audi R15 TDI

Mar 19 Sebring 12 Hours (USA)

Audi R18

Apr 24 Test day, Le Mans (F)
May 08 Spa-Francorchamps (B) 6 Hours
Jun 11/12 Le Mans (F) 24 Hours
Jul 03 Imola (I) 6 Hours
Sep 11 Silverstone (GB) 6 Hours
Oct 01 Petit Le Mans, Road Atlanta (USA)
Nov 12 China (CN) 6 Hours

Audi A4 DTM

May 01 Hockenheim (D)
May 15 Zandvoort (NL)
Jun 05 Spielberg (A)
Jun 19 EuroSpeedway Lausitz (D)
Jul 03 Norisring (D)
Jul 17 Show event Munich (D)
Aug 07 Nürburgring (D)
Sep 04 Brands Hatch (GB)
Sep 18 Oschersleben (D)
Oct 02 Valencia (E)
Oct 23 Hockenheim (D)
Nov 06 Shanghai (CN)

Audi R8 LMS

Jun 25/26 Nürburgring (D) 24 Hours
Jul 30/31 Spa-Francorchamps (B) 24 Hours

Next Generation Porsche Cayenne, Engineered By Audi

2011 Porsche Cayenne

Audi will be developing the VW Group’s Audi Q7, Porsche Cayenne and the Volkswagen Touareg large sport utility vehicles in the future. Until now, Porsche had the responsibility of engineering these three cars, which share just about the same underpinnings. This important decision to transfer the responsibility to Audi was made after Porsche was chosen instead of Audi to be the lead developer of the sports and luxury sedans cars within the Volkswagen Group.

In Automotive News Europe German, an Audi spokesman confirmed that the company will be fully responsible for developing the platforms of large sport utility vehicle model lines within the VW Group. The spokesman added that “this decision was made in agreement with all of the brands involved and will create synergies throughout the group to the benefit of both the brand and the customers.” A spokesman from Porsche stated that “this is not badge engineering. Porsche will be responsible for the engines and performance of the next Cayenne. It will drive like a Porsche and perform like a Porsche.” Audi will also be responsible for making Porsche’s new small sport utility vehicle, dubbed Cajun, which will share the underbody with the Q5.

According to the Financial Times Deutschland, the bosses over at Volkswagen are hoping that this change will end the conflict over development responsibilities between Porsche and Audi that was born when the VW Group decided to integrate Porsche as the 10th brand in the conglomerate.

The new Cayenne model developed by Audi will most likely be launched in the next 4-5 years as the second-generation of the SUV went on sale a few months ago. Also introduced in 2010, is the second-generation of the Volkswagen Touareg. The development of the upcoming Audi Q7 is almost done and the SUV will go on sale in about two years.

2011 Porsche Cayenne

Volkswagen chose Porsche to develop the group’s “modular standard matrix” which will underpin the future Bentleys and the current Porsche Panamera. Porsche will also be responsible for a platform for sports cars that will have rear-mid and front-mid power units for Lamborghini, Audi and Porsche. Audi will still have the Volkswagen Group’s responsibility for the “modular longitudinal matrix” platform that was introduced in 2007 and launched cars like the Audi A4, A5 and the small sport utility vehicle Q5.

Volkswagen is responsible for the “modular transverse matrix” platform that will debut on the 2012 Audi A3 and will later on develop approximately 40 models and 6 million cars per year, including the VW Golf 7. Volkswagen is merging Porsche into the group after the company bought 49.9% of Porsche’s unit, after the latter tried a hostile takeover of VW that failed.

Review – Audi A1 E-Tron Concept

Audi A1 E-Tron Concept

In the past, the idea of creating an electric or hybrid sports car was something unusual, but as time passed by, automakers like Tesla or Mercedes introduced us to their concepts. The first one to reveal an electric sports car was Tesla with its beautiful Roadster model. The Germans over at Mercedes launched this year the SLS E-Cell concept which will most likely go into production starting with 2013, for those of us that can afford $250,000 for an electric car. If you want something more affordable (but still quite expensive), Audi might have what you need, the A1 E-Tron which will go into production starting with 2012 at a $150,000 price tag.

These cars won’t be very successful at first due to their hefty price and limited autonomy. The big bucks will be given to the ordinary cars like the Nissan Leaf or the Chevrolet Volt. This E-Tron from Audi is based on the small A1 model and it was designed as a “mega city vehicle”, which is a small-sized agile vehicle, ostensibly affordable and can be used on a daily bases, featuring four full-size seats. With other words, it is the ideal urban transport method that might be enjoyed by more picky automobile enthusiasts.

This special Audi A1 model gets is power from a transverse synchronous electric motor which is mounted low and up front into the chassis. The car comes with a 12 kW lithium-ion battery that is placed beneath the floor and has a power output of 61 hp and a torque of 111 lb-ft. Exaggerating a little bit, the car resembles with the Porsche 911 Turbo in the way that it is capable of generating more power in short bursts (up to 177 lb-ft, 102 hp). The people over at Audi said that the A1 E-Tron Concept will need 10.2 seconds in order to reach 62 mph from dead start. Top speed should be about 80 mph or so.

If the driver of the A1 uses the car only with the batteries, it will last him approximately 30 miles, which according to Audi is enough for getting the job done in the city. If your battery reaches the 0% level of charge, it will take you three hours to fully charge it at a 220-volt outlet, or six hours at a 110-volt one. For those of you that want to get greater distances, the E-Tron is equipped with a 254 cc single-rotor Wankel engine which can be used in order to power up the battery. It is mounted in the back of the car and acts only as a generator, without being linked to the wheels of the automobile. In this case the range goes up considerably to approximately 155 miles. The fuel capacity is about three gallons and the officials at Audi say that the when the rotary is charging the battery, the car will do 124 mpg.

Audi A1 E-Tron Concept

The front wheels of the E-Tron are driven by a 1-stage transmission that is attached directly to the motor. The acceleration is entirely linear due to the fact that the car has no gears. Inside the car, the shifter allows the driver to choose from one of the D, R, N, Range modes. The latter is used in order to activate the rotary engine, which can be done at any time when the driver wants to, unless for the situation in which the battery is discharged, because at that time the range mode is activated.

The driving feeling of the Audi A1 E-Tron is totally different in comparison to a normal conventional car that uses internal combustion. Although it has a very low amount of power, it launches quite respectably. The powertrain noise is almost undetectable; the driver will only hear the wind and the sound made by wheels that spin on the asphalt. The people over at CarAndDriver.com had the occasion to drive the E-Tron and they said that it has a very direct steering and efficient brakes. If it weren’t for the lack of noise, many of us would say that it is a normal car.

The level of how aggressively the E-Tron recharges under deceleration is fully adjustable by using the wheel-mounted paddles. The choice of the setting is indicated in the modern LCD instrument panel.

Audi is looking towards the future with the hybrid Q5 model and the R8 E-Tron that are due to be unveiled in the future. At the moment Audi manufactured 20 A1 E-Tron concepts that are being tested around Munich. In addition, it will install more and more dedicated charging stations to support their upcoming models.

Source: CarAndDriver.com

November U.S. Sales, Up By 17%

The United States trucks and cars sales rose by 17% in November, raising high hopes that the automotive market will end on a very high note, creating a solid momentum for 2011. Last month, the number of light vehicle sales went up to 873,407 cars, which is the 11th market advance in the past 12 months. The car sales until November, reached 10.45 million units, topping the 2009 sales figures that totaled 10.43 million.

The United States sales, for the second consecutive month achieved an annual selling rate of 12.26 million units, according to the information revealed by AutoData Corporation. In 2009, the light vehicles delivered reached an annual rate of only 10.86 million vehicles. According to Edmunds.com, larger vehicles, crossovers and pickup trucks are more popular among buyers. The redesigned or new models coming from Hyundai, Nissan, VW as well as other car manufacturers, helped raise the sales figures.

Ford sold 20% more trucks and cars in comparison to 2009. GM’s sales also went up by 12% and its four remaining brands grew by 21%. According to the Chrysler Group, the November request for new cars rose by 17%.

Today, the General Motors officials predicted that a gradual economic recovery will most likely continue to strengthen the request for new vehicles. Jim Bunnell, who is the general manager of U.S. sales for General Motors, stated that “the economy is continuing to gain traction. We believe we will see meaningful job creation in the coming months.”

Moving on, the Hyundai Group (and Kia), sold this November 41% more cars. The demand for Honda cars in the United States grew by 21%. Porsche also is doing well, benefiting from 49% more sales. Jaguar Land Rover sales climbed by 22%. Nissan is also benefiting from an increased number of sales, the deliveries for their vehicles rose by 27%.

On the contrary, Toyota sales, including Scion and Lexus, went down by 3% in November, totaling 129,137 cars, although the company spent more on incentives in comparison to 2009. The situation clearly illustrates the problems the Japanese automaker is having in winning back the trust of the United States customers, after more than a year since the automaker started recalling millions of cars that shattered Toyota’s good image for manufacturing high quality cars that are very safe on the road. Toyota and Mazda were the only two manufacturers that did not post double-digit sales gains in November; Mazda’s sales went up by only 7%.

Almost all of the General Motors cars shipped were 2011 models, which allowed the company to increase the average transaction prices, according to Don Johnson, who is GM’s vice president of United States sales operations. Through last month, the average price of a GM car went up by $1,300 in comparison to the similar period of 2009. Johnson added that the incentives averaged 10.4% of GM’s transaction prices, which is just about the same as the rest of the industry.

Volkswagen AG sold 24.2% more cars last month, the Jetta Sedan being the most successful model as sales grew by a healthy 49%. Analysts affirm that the sales made in the final weekend of the month went up due to the Thanksgiving holiday deals that were sponsored by individual manufacturers and dealers, including Nissan and Toyota.

Automaker Nov. 2010 Nov. 2009 Pct. chng. 11 month
2010
11 month
2009
Pct. chng.
BMW Group* 22,909 18,030 27% 238,443 218,138 9%
Chrysler Group LLC 74,152 63,560 17% 984,509 844,879 17%
Daimler AG** 19,259 17,462 10% 208,946 184,294 13%
Ford Motor Co.*** 146,956 122,846 20% 1,773,868 1,493,533 19%
General Motors**** 168,670 150,676 12% 1,987,552 1,864,211 7%
Honda (American)† 89,617 74,003 21% 1,100,864 1,043,641 6%
Hyundai Group†† 67,324 46,002 46% 819,250 680,282 20%
Isuzu - - -% - 165 -100%
Jaguar Land Rover 4,039 3,319 22% 40,329 33,420 21%
Maserati 166 100 66% 1,717 1,158 48%
Mazda 15,304 14,255 7% 208,087 189,512 10%
Mitsubishi 4,306 2,925 47% 50,809 49,631 2%
Nissan††† 71,366 56,288 27% 814,840 696,699 17%
Porsche 2,416 1,626 49% 22,753 17,578 29%
Saab Cars North America‡ 397 - -% 3,763 - -%
Subaru 20,792 16,988 22% 237,126 193,578 23%
Suzuki 2,332 1,540 51% 21,347 36,811 -42%
Toyota‡‡ 129,317 133,700 -3% 1,586,107 1,582,287 0%
Volkswagen‡‡‡ 29,713 23,191 28% 325,279 267,955 21%
Volvo Cars North America‡‡‡‡ 4,078 - -% 16,667 - -%
Other (estimate) 294 308 -5% 3,234 3,372 -4%
TOTAL 873,407 746,819 17% 10,445,490 9,401,144 11%

Numbers in this table are calculated by Automotive News based on actual monthly sales reported by the manufacturers and may differ from numbers reported elsewhere.

Source: Automotive News Data Center

Note: Other includes estimates for Aston Martin, Ferrari, Lamborghini and Lotus

*Includes Mini and Rolls-Royce
**Includes Maybach, Mercedes-Benz and Smart
***Includes Volvo through July 2010
****Includes Saab through February 2010
†Includes Acura
††Includes Kia
†††Includes Infiniti
‡The sale of Saab was final on February 23, 2010
‡‡Includes Lexus and Scion
‡‡‡Includes Audi and Bentley
‡‡‡‡The sale of Volvo to Zhejiang Geely Holding Group was final on Aug. 2, 2010

Source: AutoNews.com


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