New quattro Ultra saves fuel
Audi’s A4 Allroad will be the first four-wheel drive car that uses a new generation of quattro technology that is aimed at saving fuel, and will be named quattro Ultra.
The unit itself is 4kg lighter than before but it is the extra technology that has been added, not that which was removed that makes quattro Ultra impressive.
The four-wheel drive system features an electric clutch to the rear of the gearbox which allows for power to be transferred to and from the rear wheels in a fraction of a second. This improvement in speed means less mechanical drag.
The second addition is another electric clutch fitted to the rear differential which allows the rear wheels to turn freely instead of with the prop-shaft. The decoupling of the wheels and prop-shaft means there is less mechanical drag, reducing fuel consumption.
The computer driving the quattro system has also undergone improvements and can analyse more data quicker, and decide when to engage and disengage drive to the rear-wheels. It also takes weather and driving style into consideration.
Apart from the Allroad, the new system will also find its way to other Audis in the future. According to sources, models using the 2,0-litre TFSI engine will be the first to receive the new technology, and will be compatible with the S tronic dual-clutch and manual gearbox.
The more powerful all-wheel drive Audis will continue to use a torque-convertor, automatic and conventional all-wheel drive.