Audi’s new naming scheme might be a little confusing

Article by Christian A., on August 25, 2017

Back in the day, automakers like Audi had very simple names for their car - often a short combination of letters and numbers. For instance, an A4 3.0 TFSI Quattro means that it is equipped with a 3.0 liter engine. But that was when engines were fueled by either gasoline or diesel. Now that companies are shifting to eco friendly options such as plug-in hybrids, EVs, and fossil fuels, how will companies name these models without being too technical?

Audi has already started coming up with new names and badges for the future models, but it didn't turn out as they expected. Before all this, Audi focused on simple names like A1 and Q7, where "A" referred to the smallest car in the lineup and "Q" was the larger SUV they offered. In other words, these combinations are like code names for the class and type of vehicles.

But future Audi vehicles will begin to have two-digit numbers on the rear badge plus the current model designation and the engine type. These numbers will range from 30 all the way to 70, depending on the power output. To give you a better idea, models that have a power output of 109 to 128 horsepower (from 81 to 96 kilowatts) will have a number “30” on its badge. Number “40” for those with 125 to 150 kilowatts, “50” for 210 to 230 kilowatts, “60” for 320 to 338 kilowatts, and “70” for over 400 kilowatts, or for the performance class models. Of course, there are also numbers 35, 45, 55, and 65 in between what I have mentioned above. That alone makes it confusing already, but it even gets worse when these numbers are written beside existing badges like TFSI, TDI, G-tron, or E-tron.

Audi explains that the number combinations help identity the company’s product range, particularly for plug-in hybrids and electric vehicles, while representing a hierarchy within the brand’s overall model range. Dr. Dietmar Voggenreiter, Board of Management Member for Sales and Marketing at Audi AG, said that engine displacement will soon be irrelevant considering that increasingly more cars are shifting to alternative drive technologies. By designating them according to their power output, it makes everything clearer and more logical too. In other words, the higher the number, the better it can perform.

This change will be implemented as soon as this fall with the upcoming Audi A8, wherein the two-cylinder engine will be given either a “50 TDI” or a “55 TFSI” badge which means they have 286 hp and 340 hp (213 and 253 kW) respectively. All models after the A8 will also be given this designation. Now, consumers will have no choice but to accept this naming scheme.

Press Release

Two numbers to signify the future – new power output designations at Audi

Audi is adopting a standardized nomenclature for the power output designations of its worldwide range of automobiles. The names of the model series – from Audi A1 to Audi Q7 – will remain unchanged. Within the model families, combinations of two numbers will replace the various type designations previously used. The new designations stand for the specific power output and apply both to cars with combustion engines and to e-tron models with hybrid and electric drives.

The reference value for the new model designations is the power output of the individual model in kilowatts (kW). Audi is thus subclassifying its model range into different performance levels – each identified by a two-numeral combination. For example, the numeral combination “30” will appear on the rear of all models with power output between 81 and 96 kW. And “45” stands for power output between 169 and 185 kW. The top of the Audi model range is the performance class above 400 kW, which is identifiable by the number combination “70”. In each case the numerals appear along with the engine technology – TFSI, TDI, g-tron or e-tron.

The number combinations identifying the performance levels in the Audi product range increase in increments of five, and they represent the hierarchy within both the respective model series and the brand’s overall model range. According to the new nomenclature, in the future the spectrum will range from the Audi Q2 30 TFSI with 85 kW (combined fuel consumption in l/100 km: 5.4 – 5.1*; CO2 emissions in g/km: 123 – 117*) to the Audi Q7 50 TDI with 200 kW (combined fuel consumption in l/100 km: 6.4 – 5.9*; CO2 emissions in g/km: 168 – 154*). A special place in the line-up is occupied by the high-end, high-performance S and RS models and the Audi R8 (combined fuel consumption in l/100 km: 12.5 – 11.4; combined CO2 emissions in g/km: 292 – 272). They will retain their classic names in reference to their top position in the model range.

“As alternative drive technologies become increasingly relevant, engine displacement as a performance attribute is becoming less important to our customers. The clarity and logic of structuring the designations according to power output makes it possible to distinguish between the various performance levels,” explains Dr. Dietmar Voggenreiter, Board of Management Member for Sales and Marketing at AUDI AG.

The changes will kick off with the new Audi A8 generation in the fall of 2017. First among the two six-cylinder engines to be redesignated will be the 3.0 TDI with 210 kW – as the Audi A8 50 TDI (combined fuel consumption in l/100 km: 5.8 – 5.6**; combined CO2 emissions in g/km: 152 – 145**), and the 3.0 TFSI with 250 kW – as the Audi A8 55 TFSI (combined fuel consumption in l/100 km: 7.8 – 7.5**; combined CO2 emissions in g/km: 178 – 171**).

In the coming months, all Audi model series launched on the market will be assigned the new performance designations beginning when they are offered for sale. Audi will change the designations of the remaining model series in the current product range in time for the new model year changeover in summer of 2018.

* Figures depend on the tires/wheels used and on the transmission version, and for the Q7 also
on the number of seats

** Figures depend on the tires/wheels used and on the body version

Source: Audi

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