Audi launches Sport brand

Regina Leader-Post - - DRIVING - GRAEME FLETCHER Driv­

Audi picked the New York In­ter­na­tional Auto Show to launch its new Audi Sport brand. For­merly known as Qu­at­tro GmbH, it gives the com­pany a more rec­og­niz­able um­brella for its range of ev­ery­day su­per­cars.

The new name was in­spired by the com­pany’s rich racing his­tory. Back in the 1930s, the Sil­ver Ar­row cars from then Auto Union were win­ning on race­tracks around the world. Fifty years later, it was Qu­at­tro; the cars equipped with this per­ma­nent all-wheel drive cleaned up in ev­ery­thing from rally com­pe­ti­tions to race­tracks. Closer to home, it has been the ex­ploits of the R18 and its as­tound­ing 13 vic­to­ries at Le Mans that acts as the halo for all Audis.

For the mor­tal, Audi’s Cus­tomer Racing pro­gram will be ex­panded with a racer de­rived di­rectly from the pro­duc­tion R8 V-10 coupe. The su­per-se­duc­tive and equally po­tent R8 LMS GT4 will make its racing de­but at the Nür­bur­gring 24-Hour this spring.

On the road, it has long been a source of con­ster­na­tion that many of the RS rides avail­able in Europe (think RS 6 Avant!) never made the trip across the At­lantic to North Amer­ica. That is all about to change. As it stands, Audi Sport’s um­brella cov­ers the RS mod­els, in­clud­ing the re­cently re­leased 2018 TT RS and RS 3, along with the R8 su­per­car. But in the next two years, Audi Sport will add a to­tal of eight new mod­els.

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