By David Undercoffler
10:00 AM EST, January 9, 2013
Audi will use the 2013 Detroit Auto Show to add a little more speed to its lineup.
The company will be unveiling on Monday, Jan. 14 a revised R8 lineup for 2014, an RS5 convertible and the fastest version yet of its Q5 crossover SUV, the SQ5.
The R8 gang starts by gaining a new member in the form of the R8 V10 Plus. The car will wring 550 horsepower and 398 pound-feet of torque from the 5.2-liter V-10 engine. Audi says it also sheds about 100 pounds by using carbon fiber for several body panels, swapping in a small fuel tank and adding ceramic brakes.
When paired with the new seven-speed dual-clutch transmission that will be available on all 2014 R8's, the V10 Plus will do 0-60 mph in a scant 3.3 seconds. This time also means it's faster than the (slightly) more powerful R8 GT. The R8 V10 Plus will come in coupe form only, and buyers can also choose a six-speed manual transmission.
Next in the R8 hierarchy is the 2014 R8 V10. Its output remains the same, at 525 horsepower and 391 pound-feet of torque, but with the addition of the new dual-clutch transmission, 0-60 mph times fall by 0.3 second to 3.4 seconds.
Finally, the base R8 keeps its 4.2-liter V-8 engine that makes 430 horsepower and 317 pound-feet of torque. The inclusion of the S tronic transmission helps drop 0-60 mph times to 4.2 seconds.
Both the R8 V10 and R8 are also available with a six-speed manual gearbox, and will come in coupe or convertible form.
RS 5 Cabriolet
Shortly after bringing the RS5 coupe to the U.S., Audi will bring stateside the convertible version, which also made an appearance at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas on Tuesday. The power train remains the same: a naturally aspirated V-8 making 450 horsepower and 317 pound-feet of torque. The car routs this power to all four wheels via a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission.
Audi says the car will do 0-60 mph in 4.9 seconds, a decent time until you consider this is a car with 450 horsepower and all-wheel drive. That time is also almost half a second slower than the coupe's 4.5 seconds. This penalty probably is the result of the 411 pounds the Cabriolet gains over the coupe from added structural reinforcements and the roof mechanism.
Audi says the 2014 R8's and the RS5 Cabriolet will go on sale this spring.
Not content to let the cars have all the fun, Audi will also be bringing a faster version of its Q5 crossover SUV. Awkwardly dubbed the SQ5, this crossover takes a 3-liter V-6 and supercharges it for a total of 354 horsepower and 346 pound-feet of torque. The SQ5 will have an eight-speed automatic transmission pushing power to all four wheels via Audi's Quattro system.
This Audi will scoot from zero to 60 mph in 5.3 seconds, the company says. Performance gear like torque-vectoring, paddle shifters and a lowered, sport-tuned suspension help to increase the fun quotient. Also, 20-inch wheels will be standard, while 21-inch versions will be optional.
Audi says the SQ5 will join its Q5 brethren on the sales lot in the summer.
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