February 2013
More Power, Less Petrol

Audi’s new s Model line has arrived in the middle east, featuring an engine that delivers more horsepower while slashing fuel consumption by a quarter

A udi’s new S series of cars have arrived in the Middle East after making their regional debut at the Qatar Motor Show in January, offering three versions with new engines that boast fuel consumption about a quarter less than the previous model yet provide sportier performance that zip to top speeds in a flash.

The four-liter, twin-turbo V8 powers all three models, delivering up to 520 horsepower for the top-line S8, while the hybrid aluminum body of the S6 and S7 reduce their weight by about 15% compared with an all-steel body, boosting their fuel efficiency. The Audi modular efficiency platform includes the recuperation and start-stop systems, with its cylinder-on-demand technology deactivating unneeded ones for a significant gain in efficiency at moderate highway speeds.

The high-performance 4.0 turbo fuel stratified injection engine bears the classic cylinder angle of 90 degrees, the chain drive for the four camshafts and ancillary units is placed in the back to save space and the casing is cast of aluminum-silicon alloy resulting in a light-weight unit. Switchable flaps in the intake ports of the fuel direct injection system induce a rolling type of movement in the incoming air for improved combustion.

Like most other Audi engines, the 4.0 TFSI uses forced induction rather than displacement, with one turbocharger per cylinder bank compressing the intake air - known as twinscroll technology - so the exhaust flows to the turbine wheel at high speed through two separate ports and enables torque to be developed extremely early.

Beyond performance, the models include a noise cancellation system that uses four microphone in the cabin to analyze intrusive sounds and tries to cancel them out via the speakers, as well as for the first time a parking system with a 360 degree camera system that allows the driver to see a variety of views including cross traffic.

Prices in Lebanon begin at $130,000 for the S6, $130,000 for the S7 and $150,000 for the S8.

The S6, the first in the S Model line, uses the 420 horsepower version of the 4.0 TFSI, delivering 550 newton meters of torque from 1,400 to 5,300 revolutions per minute, allowing the car to accelerate from standstill to 100 kilometers per hour in 4.8 seconds, with a top speed of 250 kilometers per hour.

The engine, along with other advancements, reduce fuel consumption by as much as 25%, with the average rate at 9.7 liters per 100 kilometers. This is helped by the lightweight body, which is about 20% aluminum, giving a curb weight of 1,895 kilograms.

The S6 sedan comes standard with xenon plus headlights, LED rear lights, an electromechanical parking brake and Bluetooth. For more spendy roadsters, options include the parking system with the 360 degree camera and climate-controlled seats with a massage function. It’s available in eight colors, including ’estoril blue’ and ’prism silver.’

The top-of-the-line among the S Models, the Audi S8 takes everything from the first two in the series up a notch to crank out more power and offer the most luxurious feel while still cutting fuel consumption.

Its version of the 4.0 TFSI is generates 520 horsepower and delivers a constant 650 newton meters of torque to the crankshaft from 1,700 to 5,500 revolutions per minute. The extra power allows the S8 to spring from 0 to 100 kilometers per hour in 4.2 seconds.

Fuel consumption is a bit higher than the other models at 10.2 liters per 100 kilometers, down 23% from the previous 5.2-liter V10 engine in the previous model despite a 70 horsepower increase in output.

The eight-speed tiptronic uses tall gears at low revolutions whenever possible, downshifting quickly when requested by the driver and delivering power to a quattro drivetrain that combines a self-locking center differential with the sport differential at the rear axle. During dynamic driving, most of the power flows to the outside wheel to push the sedan into the corner.

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