2023 Audi RS 5 Coupe And Sportback Get New Competition Package

2023 Audi RS 5 Coupe And Sportback

Audi Sport’s new Competition Package for the 2023 Audi RS 5 Coupe and Sportback will cost you $16,100.

Customers in the United States can now buy more extreme versions of the 2023 Audi RS 5. The automaker’s new competition package for the RS 5 Coupe and RS 5 Sportback recently made its world debut. For the 2023 model year in the US, Audi Sport offers both technical and visual improvements exclusive to these two models.

Buyers can opt for the Competition package from the Ingolstadt automaker’s performance division for just $16,100. We expect the company to start accepting orders starting next month. Prices for the Audi RS 5 Coupe start at $75,900, whereas the Sportback version gets an MSRP of $76,200. Audi Sport now offers the models within a new sports exhaust system on the performance front.

In addition to lesser insulation between the cabin and the engine bay, the new exhaust also flaunts matte black tailpipes. The exhaust also reduces the overall weight by 18 lbs and delivers a more aggressive exhaust note. With the new package, the 2023 RS 5 coupe can hit the 60 MPH mark from a complete standstill in 3.7 seconds.

Audi Sport's new Competition package for the 2023 Audi RS 5 Coupe and Sportback will cost you $16,100.

2023 Audi RS 5 Coupe and Sportback can achieve a top speed of 180 MPH with the new competition package.

The Sportback variant with its 444 HP bi-turbo V6 powerplant can make the same run in 3.8 seconds in the same configuration. In the dynamic driving mode, the fine-tuning of the engine control software allows it to make tighter load changes with the S transmission mode. The new RS twins also sit much closer to the track as the company has reduced the ground clearance by 10 mm over stock models.

Furthermore, the driver can also manually reduce the ride height by an additional 10 mm. The cars ride on a coilover suspension setup with a front sway bar. The vehicles come complete with sharper steering, and the quattro sport rear differential also gets enhancements. According to the company, the RS ceramic front brakes reduce the stopping distance of the new RS models by 6.5 feet (from 62 MPH). For this reason, Audi Sport also made enhancements to the ABS and the transmission control unit.

Image Source: Audi

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Audi RS Q e-tron Drifts Alongside Ducati DesertX in Italy

Audi RS Q e-tron

Audi and Ducati join forces to unveil a common design to emphasize the synergy between the brand groups. The Audi RS Q e-tron demonstrates its extraordinary capabilities drifting alongside the motorcycle.

The Volkswagen automotive group has many sub-brands under its umbrella. As our avid readers must already know, this includes the Ingolstadt brand. However, for those unfamiliar with the two-wheeler industry, VW’s Italian subsidiary Lamborghini is also the parent company of Ducati Motor Holding. A group of lucky journalists recently got the opportunity to drive an Audi RS Q e-tron racer alongside a Ducati DesertX motorcycle in Sardinia, Italy.

The event was also the first time that journalists got to test both vehicles simultaneously. Both offerings now share a common design language that highlights the synergy between the brand groups. The test was conducted under the expert supervision of motorsport professionals from Audi and Ducati. Danilo Petrucci from Ducati was present to demonstrate the potential of the bike manufacturer’s Testastretta motor.

Audi’s Carlos Sainz/Lucas Cruz, along with Stéphane Peterhansel/Edouard Boulanger and Emil Bergkvist, also displayed the capability of the RS Q e-tron’s advanced technology by drifting the Dakar racer drifting alongside the Italian two-wheeler on gravel tracks.

Audi RS Q e-tron

Audi factory driver Carlos Sainz shared his thoughts on the RS Q e-tron.

“What Audi has achieved with this concept is technically unique and a real benefit for us drivers,” explains Sainz. He further adds, “The event in Sardinia was great to communicate the benefits of the electric drive. All the media were impressed throughout.”

A high-voltage battery pack powers the Audi RS Q e-tron. The Dakar racer’s innovative electric drive setup uses an energy converter that offers a maximum charging power of 220 kilowatts. The converter consists of a TFSI engine and motor generator units derived from the automaker’s e-tron FE07 Formula E racer. The electrified off-roader can accelerate to 62 MPH from a complete standstill in just 4.5 seconds on loose surfaces. The Audi RS Q e-tron can also hit a top speed of 106 mph. With four stage victories, RS Q e-tron made an exciting debut.

Danilo Petrucci also offered his insights on the experience. “It’s a dream come true for me, because already as a child I was a fan of Carlos Sainz,” said the Italian. “You can’t describe the feeling in the cockpit. I didn’t expect the RS Q e-tron to be so fast off-road. Its technology shows the way to the future of the automobile.”

Image Source: Audi

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Audi Announces 2023 Model Year Updates For the US

2023 Model

The German automaker will be expanding its EV lineup later this year. Audi is now updating its US product portfolio for the 2023 model year.

The Ingolstadt brand is introducing the 2023 model year for the United States. Audi’s 2023 MY lineup will get a slew of minor and major updates across the company’s portfolio. Every single Audi model now gets additional standard and optional equipment. These include the entry-level Audi A3 and Q3 variants and the top-of-the-line A8 and Q8 offerings.

Audi will also be expanding its EV portfolio later this year. The automaker will add the Audi Q4 e-tron Q4 Sportback e-tron to its lineup. For now, the 40 and 45 variants of the 2023 Audi A4 get LED headlights with integrated LED DRLs. One will also find a Bang and Olufsen sound system in the Premium Plus trim of the nameplate, and the convenience package for the entire A4 range now gets the adaptive cruise control feature.

Audi is also updating the appearance options for the 2023 A4, including new wheels. In addition to a wide range of equipment, the Premium variant of Audi A6 and S7 now get adaptive cruise control as standard. As part of the Executive package, Audi now offers the 2023 RS7 with a remote park assist feature and a black Dinamica headliner.

Audi Announces 2023 Model Year Updates For the US

For its 2023 model year, the adaptive cruise control feature is standard across all Q5 and SQ5 variants.

November last year, the 2022 Audi A8 facelift made its world debut. As a result of this, the 2023 update now gets only minor updates across the range. Audi A8 customers opting for the German automaker’s Comfort Plus package will now get HD matrix design LED headlights. Audi will now offer the high-octane S8 version with a Valcona leather interior.

SUVs and crossovers are the best-selling body types in the market right now. Nevertheless, Audi did not refrain from updating its range for the 2023 model year. The automaker’s Q3 nameplate now gets a wireless phone charging pad and LED headlights with LED daytime running lights as standard across the lineup.

The company also offers an optional appearance package for the 40 and 45 variants of the Q3, which gets new wheel options. Perhaps one of the most significant changes for the 2023 model year is a new entry-level engine option for the Audi Q7. The SUV now gets a 2-liter four-cylinder motor which churns out 261 HP of maximum power.

Lastly, Audi’s flagship Q8 and SQ8 models also get HD matrix design LED headlights and headlight washers as standard for the 2023 model year.

Image source: Audi

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Audi Urbansphere Concept is a Futuristic Vision For Urban Travel

Urbansphere

Audi Urbansphere concept vehicle gets Audi’s PPE electric vehicle platform and charging (up to 270kW fast) capability.

Earlier in February, the Head of Audi Design Marc Lichte discussed the gorgeous Audi Skysphere concept. The car draws inspiration from the controversial and mysterious Horch 853. Even though Audi Skysphere is quite an eye-catching grand tourer concept, we were impatiently waiting for Audi’s take on a futuristic utility vehicle, since crossovers and SUVs are the most popular body types in the market. The wait is over as the Ingolstadt brand recently unveiled the all-new Audi Urbansphere concept.

Audi Urbansphere is the final installment of Audi’s next-generation concept cars. The Sphere concepts showcase how the Ingolstadt brand’s electric architecture will underpin its autonomous offerings in the future. The utility vehicle gets Level 4 autonomous driving features and is the largest Audi concept. For context, the Urbansphere is 500 mm longer than the Q7 SUV, which is the biggest product in Audi’s portfolio.

The powertrain of the Audi Urbansphere gets a dual electric motor setup. The EV’s 120 kWh battery pack can deliver 466 miles of range (WLTP) and also churns out 400 HP of maximum power and around 509 lb-ft of peak torque. Audi’s Premium Platform Electric (PPE) vehicle architecture underpins the all-new Urbansphere concept. The vehicle rides on 24-inch wheels and comes complete with adaptive air suspension and rear-axle steering.

Urbansphere

“Audi Light Canvas” is an LED digital light surface that dominates the front end of the Urbansphere instead of a traditional grille.

Even with its imposing dimensions, Audi claims that it designed the new concept car for applications in megacities. In an official press release, the company also reveals that Audi is targeting the Chinese market with its Urbansphere concept. For the uninitiated, China happens to be the world’s largest electric vehicle market.

With the help of a “co-creation” approach, the teams at Audi’s design studios in Beijing were able to finalize the design of the Audi Urbansphere while accounting for the needs of customers across Beijing. Chairman of the Board Management at Audi AG, Markus Duesmann, shared his thoughts on the new Urbansphere concept. “To make e-mobility even more attractive, we think about it holistically and from the customer’s needs,” says Markus.

Image Source: Audi

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Hot Take: The Audi TT is the Reincarnated Porsche 356

Porsche 356

The Audi TT and the original Porsche 356 are both timeless classics, but first and foremost, they are driver’s cars.

Many people wish Porsche still made the 356 or something like it. Just not necessarily air-cooled or powered by a flat-four cylinder engine. You can buy 356 replicas and even turn your Boxster into a Speedster but I’m talking about a car that shares its roots with Volkswagen. A car that’s a bit rough and tumble and recalls the days when Porsches were attainable by people with modest means. A car that’s playful yet practical enough to be your only car. It’s not an outright sports car, but one rewarding to drive. Better still, one you’re willing to drive daily and even park on the street.

Fortunately, that car exists. And the reason I’m writing about it here and not Rennlist is because it’s the Audi TT.

Hot Take: The Audi TT is the Reincarnated Porsche 356

The original Porsche 356 shared many components with the Volkswagen Beetle. Porschephiles will cringe when you point that out, but it’s not a bad thing. The Audi TT also shares the VW Group A platform using the same configuration as the Audi A3 and VW Golf. It’s a solid platform that also underpins the Audi RS 3 which is a seriously good driver’s car. And like that car, the TT is a great car to drive. In fact, Car and Driver praised it for its balance and stability.

Driving it provides a similar experience to the Porsche 356 – just ask Wayne Carini. He owned an early TT Quattro and wrote about it in Hagerty. “The TT felt a lot like a Porsche 356 in that you didn’t need a ton of power to have a good time,” Carini said. Now over 20 years old, the original TT is gaining appreciation in the collector market. They don’t fetch obscene prices like the original Porsche 356. But with the general insanity happening on sites like Bring A Trailer, you never know what’s going to happen next.

Audi TT RS Back

The styling is also similar to the Porsche 356. Both vehicles have the distinctive shape of a streamlined VW Beetle, even though the TT’s engine is in front instead of the rear. The interior is simple and straightforward, matching the timeless look of the exterior. There’s no touchscreen to distract you.  Everything you need uses a button or switch and is within reach. Few cars make you want to sit in them just to look around, to take notice of your surroundings, instead of getting in and driving. Both the Porsche 356 and Audi TT share that trait.

The Audi TT is not an outright, thoroughbred sports car. Critics in the motoring press damn it with that faint praise. “The TT is good but not a true sports car like the Porsche Boxter or Cayman,” they say. But they are missing the point. Neither was the Porsche 356, which couldn’t match a Jaguar XK or Corvette in the sports car department. Both the Porsche 356 and Audi TT are driver’s cars. They are meant to drive on any road, in any weather. They are an antidote to the rolling Novacaine, appliance on wheels most cars are today. And they exist for us to enjoy.

Hot Take: The Audi TT is the Reincarnated Porsche 356

Recently Audi announced it will stop making the TT RS and stop importing the TT to the U.S. this year. It was a good run for a great car. A car that’s a modern classic and will someday fetch Porsche Speedster money. But like most things that come to an end, we didn’t know how good we had it.

Photos: Audi and Porsche

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Mark Webb is fascinated by anything automotive and particularly loves cars that are unusual or have a good story. He’s owned a variety of cars from 60’s muscle, Japanese imports, and oddities like a VW Thing and Porsche 924. After 20 years in the automotive and tech industries, he’s a walking encyclopedia of car info and is always on the lookout for his next project or a good road trip.