Audi unveils the new SQ5 TDI at the 24 Hours of Le Mans

Audi SQ5 TDI

The first S model to have a diesel engine.

Audi has dominated at Le Mans in recent years, bringing innovative technology beginning in 2000 with the Audi R8 (racecar) and then following with the R10 TDI, R15 TDI Plus, R18 TD, and R18 e-tron Quattro. In the past 13 years, the German automaker has seen its racecars achieve a total of 11 overall victories with six of them being diesel-powered prototype racecars.

As a celebration of this feat and its innovative technology, especially in the realm of diesel engines, the German automaker unveiled the Audi SQ5 TDI at the 2012 24 Hours of Le Mans. The new model is the first S model to ever utilize a diesel engine and achieves very impressive fuel economy numbers given its performance and power output.

The new Audi SQ5 TDI is powered by a twin-turbocharged 3.0-liter V-6 diesel engine that is designed to perform. Both turbochargers are connected by a flap and the automaker optimized the cylinder head cooling, cam shafts, and oil-jet cooling systems. The result is an impressive 313 horsepower and 479 lb-ft. (650 Nm) of torque between a low 1,450 and 2,800 RPM. This helps the performance SUV speed to 62 mph in 5.1 seconds and reach an electronically-limited top speed of 155 mph. In addition to the quick sprint times, the SQ5 TDI can also tow up to 5,292 lbs. behind it.

All of that power and gobs of torque is sent through a quick eight-speed Tiptronic transmission to the Quattro permanent all-wheel drive system with torque vectoring. Even with the impressive power and acceleration figures, the Audi SQ5 TDI still achieves about 33 US MPG (7.2l/100 km) through the use of a new regulated oil pump system, start-stop function, thermal management technology and electromechanical power steering.

Even though it is a crossover SUV, the Audi SQ5 TDI still possesses a nimble chassis. Compared to its “standard” counterpart, the performance variant features a sport suspension that is firmer and lowers the overall ride height by 30 mm (1.18 in.). A set of black brake calipers with “S” logos come standard on the front axle and hide behind 20-inch five double-spoke wheels with 255/45 tires clenching the road at all four corners.

The interior of the Audi SQ5 TDI will sport the same standards of quality, comfort, and sport as other S models in the lineup. Power sport seats with Pearl Nappa leather and Alcantara come standard or can be outfitted in four other optional color schemes. Brushed aluminum accents decorate the dashboard and cockpit alongside black trim pieces. Facing the driver is a round sport steering wheel, grey gauges, white indicators, and a three-dimensional S badge. Special S badges can also be found throughout the interior on the door sills and gear shifter.

Separating the Audi SQ5 model from the rest of the Q5 lineup are two Estoril Blue or Panther Black crystal paint finishes complemented by high-gloss trims, brushed aluminum side mirrors, and platinum grey single-frame grill with aluminum-look horizontal double bars. Special bumpers and a rear roof spoiler help to further distinguish the model and optimize airflow at higher speeds.

The new Audi SQ5 TDI will be available in the first quarter of 2013 with prices starting at €58,500 in Europe. There has been no official statement from Audi if the performance diesel model will be sold in the United States, but our fingers are crossed!

Audi SQ5 TDI Video


Audi SQ5 TDI Specifications

Displacement: 3.0-liters
Number of Cylinders: V-6
Aspiration: Twin-turbocharged
Fuel Type: Diesel
Maximum Horsepower: 313 (230 kW)
Maximum Torque: 479.42 lb-ft. (650 Nm) between 1,450 and 2,800 RPM

Type: Eight-speed Tiptronic
Drive: Quattro all-wheel with torque vectoring

Acceleration 0-62 mph: 5.1 seconds
Top Speed: 155 mph (250 km/h)

Wheels, Tires, and Suspension:
Wheels: 20-inch five double-spoke design; optional 21-inch wheels
Tires: 255/45
Suspension: Sport suspension; 30 mm (1.18 in.) lower
Brakes: Black calipers with “S” badge on front axle

-Modified front and rear bumpers
-Platinum grey single-frame grille with aluminum-look double bars
-Brushed aluminum side mirrors
– Blue or Panther Black crystal paint finishes
-Rear roof spoiler
-High-gloss trim

-Standard power sport seats with nappa leather and alcantara
-Black trim
-Brushed aluminum accents
-Grey dials, white needles, 3D “S” logo
-Round sport steering wheel
-SQ5 TDI door entry sills
-S gearshifter
-Aluminum look foot- and shift pedals
-S welcome screen and lighting package

Audi SQ5 TDI Gallery

Source: Audi

What do you think of Audi’s decision to use a diesel engine for a performance model? Leave a comment and let us know!


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