Audi R4 ready to hit the showrooms, will take on the new Jaguar C-X16

Article by Christian Andrei, on November 4, 2011

Sources inside Audi say that the R8 will get a brother and that the highly anticipated R4 may soon arrive at showrooms. This two-seater sports car will be positioned between the TT and R8, and will go up against the new Jaguar C-X16. Auto Express spoke to an Audi insider who estimated that if the model is approved today, it will take about three years for it to enter production.

The R4 will be created as a convertible and will be inspired by the e-tron Spyder. The source also revealed that making a coupe version is easy if a roadster has already been created.

Originally, the R4 will be powered by a conventional engine like Audi’s 2.5-litre five-cylinder turbo, with an output of around 400bhp. However, a hybrid will also be offered. The source added that even in its sports car lineups, the customer demand for efficiency is rising. All the R4s will have quattro four-wheel drive but the hybrid will take this further. There is nothing mechanical that links the mid-mounted engine that drive the rear wheels and the electric motor that power the fronts.

However, this car will be equipped with a clever torque vectoring system that was used on the e-tron Spyder. This drivetrain offers strong efficiency. The e-tron Spyder can operate in front-drive electric-only mode, going as fast as 37mph for about 30 miles. What’s uncertain is if the car will be built on a new mid-engined platform or a cut-down version of the R8’s aluminum spaceframe. It was on the VW BlueSport at the 2009 Detroit Motor Show that the new mid-engined chassis made its debut. It may also be used to underpin a new entry-level Porsche.

Jaguar is making a strong statement with the direction of its technological plans and the future of its design with the C-X16 Concept. For many decades now, the brand has been known for its typical front engine and rear-wheel-drive formula. However with the C-X16 Concept, it is reinventing this same formula for the 21st century by putting in a hybrid drivetrain that is more focused on performance plus ensuring that weight distribution is at 50:50.

Since the brand already has a design language that has received wide acclaim, having the aluminum bodywork cover the mechanicals as close as possible ensures that the spirit of the brand’s sports cars is still there and will remain probably even in the next generation.

C-X16 Concept has tight posture, appearing as if it is ready to take action, a truly Jaguar look. This is made possible by placing the wheels as far to its corners and extending its main feature lines away from the focal point that is the grille. On the inside, there are various future technologies on display. These include the multi-modal rotary controls which have been integrated with the mini OLED screens.

The screens have been redesigned in order to show the different functions that can be activated through the controls. All of these have been made to ensure that the sports car is indeed compatible for everyday use. Jaguar has also been known for its principle of 'Redefining Performance'.

New C-X16 Concept displays the most current version of this with the all-alloy 3.0-liter supercharged V6 engine with output at 280 kW (380 PS) and top torque coming in at 450 Nm (332 lb.-ft.). All this was made possible due to the revolutionary design.

Complementing this engine is the electric motor with output of 70 kW (95 PS) and maximum torque of 235 Nm (173 lb.-ft.). The electric motor can be activated by pressing a boost button located on the steering wheel.

The engine is paired to an eight-speed gearbox and is mounted on a chassis made of lightweight aluminum. This is the reason why it can accelerate from 0 to 62 mph in merely 4.4 seconds. Top speed is 186 mph with fuel efficiency at 41 mpg (UK gallon) and CO2 emissions at 165 g/km.

Topics: audi, jaguar, sports car

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