Preview: 2011 Audi R4

Preview: 2011 Audi R4

Many believed talk of Audi’s future mid-engined Cayman rival was pure fantasy but then details about the carmaker’s future lineup were published by Quattro Quarterly (a publication released by the Audi Club of North America) and one of the cars on that list was in fact the long rumored R4. Set to appear in June 2011, the new R4 will get its own unique platform and will likely appear in both coupe and roadster bodystyles.

Like the R8, the new R4 will feature aggressive styling and will only be able to seat two. Several engine options will be on offer as this won’t be an exclusive supercar like its bigger brother. Expect to see a range-topping model with a high-output turbocharged mill developing in excess of 300hp. Base models, meanwhile, will make do with an uprated version of the 2.0L TFSI engine.

As this rendering suggests, the R4 will pick up some styling cues from the recent A1 Metroproject concept car as well as share many similarities with the bigger R8. Although it doesn’t have the familiar side-blades, the R4 still features a pair of gaping vents positioned in front of the rear wheels. The chassis will feature steel construction but engineers are targeting a final kerb weight of around 1,250kg, and although the mid-engined Boxster and Cayman seem like the most obvious competitors Audi officials insist the new car is designed to rival vehicles from BMW’s M division and AMG.