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Next-Gen B9 Audi A4 Shedding More Than 300 Pounds

 
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Audi took the risky step of replacing the V-8 engine in its sporty S4 and S5 models with a new supercharged V-6 in an effort to boost fuel economy. Sure the six-cylinder mill is lighter and more fuel-efficient but what about the prestige of a V-8, not to mention the smoothness and aural delight? Audi believes its customers, current and future, will favor a smaller engine and will see this trend of downsizing carry over for its next-generation models--but the automaker’s drastic fuel saving strategies don’t end there.

Smaller engine displacement isn’t the only avenue Audi is investigating as weight reduction is equally important to the automaker. Take the A4 for example. Over the past 20 years, each new generation of the A4 weighed around 10 percent more than the one it replaced. For the next generation ‘B9’ model due around 2015, Audi claims that it will weigh almost 330 pounds less than the current B8 model it replaces.

The information comes from Heinrich Timm, head of Audi's Lightweight Design Center, who spoke recently to Autoblog. To reach this goal, Audi will employ more aluminum, magnesium, and high-strength steel in the construction of the cars.

And it’s not just fuel economy improvements we’re talking about--less weight means faster acceleration, better handling, shorter stopping distances and less overall wear-and-tear. As Timm points out, 220 pounds less weight roughly means a vehicle can accelerate to 60 mph in 20 fewer feet.

[Autoblog]



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Comments (5)
  1. Sounds good, maybe use electric power steering like Ford is moving too and such
     
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  2. The only thing that concerns me here is I hope lightening the vehicle doesn't mean reducing the overall size and content, cheapening it up and sacrificing safety and comfort. It concerns me that, though handling and such can improve, will it ride bumpier, coarser and more jiggily, and with more road and wind noise as well as more mechanical noise, as well as feel more hallow overall? I hope this is not the case, and how would the safety, size and quality be maintained?
     
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  3. Electric power steering like Ford? VAG has been using electric power steering for years.
     
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  4. no or yes, but maybe
     
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  5. So, in order to do that, Audi though of a process of weight reduction for the next Audi A4 generation. The 3 Series’ rival could lose up to 330 lbs, an explicit goal, fixed by Heinrich Timm, Head of the Audi Lightweight Design Centre. Reaching this goal would bring to an improved ride, performance well above the current ones, lower fuel consumption and lower CO2 emissions.
     
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