German manufacturer Audi has created an image of prestige and performance that enables it to compete with rival luxury manufacturers such as BMW and Mercedes. Audi has a long history of producing well-built, quality cars and makes innovative, safe and technologically sound vehicles, keeping them at the forefront of the competition.
Audi Car Reviews
The Four rings that have come to be Audi’s trademark logo are representative of the company’s history, and the merger in 1932 of four independent vehicle manufacturers; Audi, DKW, Wanderer, and Horch. They merged together to become Auto Union, with the four rings representing each company, but only used the badge on Auto Union racing cars, with each company continuing to use their individual names and badges.
During the Second World War the Auto Union factories were transformed to produce military weaponry and machinery, and so production ceased. Following the war the factories were dismantled as part of reparations and the company lost all assets. In 1949, Auto Union again began producing the pre-war models, including a small motorcycle and delivery van.
In 1958, Daimler-Benz acquired 87% of the company, before increasing this holding to 100% the following year. After investment in a new factory, Daimler-Benz made the decision to sell the company, with Volkswagen purchasing 50% in 1964, due to a lack of profitability. By 1966, VW had gained complete control and were utilising the spare capacity of the Auto Union factory to produce additional Beetles, whilst selling the Auto Union vehicles simply as Audi’s.
In 1969, Auto Union merged with NSU, to form the company Audi NSU Auto Union AG, re-introducing Audi as a brand for the first time since the merger of the four companies.
The Audi A1, introduced in 2010, offers a small family car with all the qualities we’ve come to expect from the Audi brand. Despite being the cheapest available Audi, nothing about this car looks budget, with a stylish interior and exterior. It is available in both petrol and diesel versions, with two engine sizes for each, 1.2 and 1.4 litre petrol models and 1.6 and 2.0 litre diesel models. In addition, the A1 gives you peace of mind with its 5 star Euro NCAP safety rating.
There are a number of A3 models available, both the standard and sport models are available in hatchback or sportback (3 and 5 doors respectively), whilst the RS3 is only available as a 5 door sportback. In addition to this Audi offer a cabriolet version of the A3. Due to the number of different models, there are a number of different engine sizes to choose from to suit your needs, whether it’s the 1.2 litre petrol in the standard A3 or the sportier 2.5 litre petrol RS3.
The S3 is a performance version of the A3 with a 2.0-litre turbocharged petrol engine which develops 261bhp. This gets the S3 from 0-62mph in 5.7 seconds and on to a limited top speed of 155mph.
The Audi A4, first manufactured in 1994, is available either as a saloon, avant (estate) or allroad quottro (4WD estate), with sport versions of the saloon and avant available. Previous generations of the A4 have also offered a cabriolet version. This medium executive car is now on its fourth generation, with the first model built to succeed the Audi 80. The A4 has also received a 5 star Euro NCAP safety rating.
The performance version of the A4 has a 3.0-litre supercharged V6 engine which develops 434bhp.
The ultra-high performance version of the A4. The RS 4 will hit 62mph in less than five seconds thanks to its 4.2-litre V8 engine but, despite its performance credentials, it still has enough space inside for 2.4 children and a dog.
There are three basic models of the A5 available, the sportback, coupe and cabriolet. Each of these is offered as a Sport version, with an RS version of the coupe also available. These executive cars are a more compact, sporty version of the A4 and have been in production since 2007. There are 3 different petrol engine sizes offered (1.8-3.0 litre) and a 2.0 or 3.0 litre diesel.
A hot version of the A5, the S5 is fitted with the same V6 engine as the S4, developing 434bhp.
The Audi A6 is a large executive car offered as either a four-door saloon or a five door estate (Avant model). The A6 replaced the Audi 100, and is currently on its 4th generation. The A6 was first introduced in 1994 and has received many enhancements through the years keeping the car up to date with the latest technology. Both models are available as a 3.0 litre petrol engine, or a 2.0 or 3.0 litre diesel engine. The A6 is another Audi car that has received the 5 star Euro NCAP rating.
The sporty A6. It'll hit 62mph in 4.8 seconds and hit 155mph thanks to its 4.0-litre twin-turbo V8.
The Audi A7 sportback offers a go between for the A6 and A8, but it is still a very roomy executive car, with an excellent build quality and tasteful interior. Originally a concept car, which first developed the A5 sportback, the A7 went into production in 2010. Available with a 2.8 or 3.0 litre engine, this car is no slouch and a sport version is offered for those requiring a bit more clout.
The performance version of the A7, with the same 4.0-litre V8 engine as the S6.
The Audi A8 is a full size luxury car. Most versions of the A8 feature the Quattro all-wheel drive system as standard. The A8 has been available in Europe since 1994 and was the first car to be built with an aluminium frame. The second generation was introduced in 2003, featuring Audi’s D3 platform and continued to be updated. It received a final facelift in 2008, including a new electronic safety system, before the new generation went on sale in 2010.
The S8 is fitted with a 4.0-litre V8 engine which develops a mammoth 513bhp and 479lb-ft of torque. 0-62mph takes 4.2 seconds and he S8 has to be electronically restrained at 155mph.
The Q3 is a small 4x4, and offers an alternative to the larger Q5 and Q7 for those who still want an off-road vehicle. It is based on the same platform as the Mk5 Volkswagen Golf, which has also been used by a number of other manufacturers for their 4x4 crossover models. With its quality finish, the Q3 provides competition for the BMW X1.
The Q5 offers a middle ground between the full sized Q7 4x4 and the more compact Q3. Although not as large as the Q7, there is still plenty of room inside for passengers, and a large boot, with the option of folding the seats to stow larger luggage.
The Audi Q7 is a large luxury 4x4. It is a very competent vehicle on the road, giving a sporty driving experience for a 4x4, and delivers the versatility of three rows of seats with its very spacious interior. Production began in 2006, and it represented the first full-sized 4x4 Audi sold. The standard model is available in 2 diesel engine sizes, 3.0 and 4.2 litre or as a 3.0 litre petrol model. In addition there is a V12, 6.0 litre diesel model.
The Audi TT is a two-door luxury sports car that comes in either coupe or roadster form, as a TT, TTS or TTRS. The TT name is taken form NSU’s tradition of racing at the Isle of Man TT, with TT standing for ‘Tourist Trophy’. The car’s bold, unique design has led the way for design innovations by rival brands. The car was first produced in 1998 and has now moved onto its second generation design. It is available with a petrol or diesel engine and in front of four wheel drive.
The R8, first released in 2007, offers a high quality, hand built supercar, based on the Lamborghini Gallardo platform and features an aluminium monocoque as part of Audi’s ‘space frame’. The R8 is a mid-engine, 2-seater, available as a coupe or spyder, with the option of a V8 or V10 engine, which provide plenty of power and performance. Although this car has the performance and handling of a top supercar, it is more refined than its rivals making it more viable for everyday use.