Audi Concept

by Denys Bolotnikov |


quattro (from Italian - “four”) - the name used by Audi AG to refer to technologies or permanent all-wheel drive systems (4WD) used in the construction of cars Audi .

The word quattro is a registered trademark of the company Audi AG (subsidiary of Volkswagen Group). learn more

Gecko - symbol Audi quattro

At the presentation as part of the 25th anniversary of the Audi all-wheel drive system, in 2005 , the public first became acquainted with the gecko, as a symbol of Audi quattro.

The decision to use the gecko came due to the supernatural ability of these animals to stay on almost any surface.


learn more

Modern quattro


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Quattro is a proprietary all-wheel drive system used on Audi vehicles. The design is a classic scheme, borrowed from SUVs - engine and gearbox are located longitudinally .

Intelligent System provides the best dynamic performance based on road conditions and wheel grip. Cars have outstanding handling and traction on any type of road surface.

The constant victories of the first Audi Quattro in rally racing proved the correctness of the chosen all-wheel drive concept. Contrary to the doubts of critics, whose main argument was the bulkiness of the transmission, ingenious engineering solutions turned this disadvantage into an advantage.

The new Audi Quattro has received excellent stability. Approximately ideal distribution of weight along the axes became possible precisely thanks to the transmission layout. The 1980 All-Wheel Drive Audi 80 became the rally legend and the exclusive production coupe.





The modern quattro transmission consists of the following basic elements:

  • - transmission;
  • - transfer case and center differential in one housing;
  • - final drive structurally made in the rear differential housing;
  • - cardan transmission that transmits torque from the center differential to the driven axles;
  • - center differential distributing power between front and rear axle;
  • - free differential front differential with electronic locking;
  • - rear differential with electronic locking.

The quattro system is characterized by increased reliability and wear resistance of elements. This fact is confirmed by three decades of operation of both production and rally cars Audi . Failures that occurred were mainly the result of improper or overly intensive use.

quattro - the perfect system of intelligent all-wheel drive, time-tested and the harsh conditions of rally racing. The latest developments and the best innovative solutions for decades have increased the overall efficiency of the system.


Principle of operation



The principle of operation of the quattro four-wheel drive is based on the most efficient power distribution during wheel slip. Electronics reads the sensors of the anti-lock braking system and compares the angular speeds of all the wheels. If one of the wheels exceeds the critical limit, it brakes.

At the same time, differential lock is turned on, and the torque in the right ratio is distributed to the wheel with the best grip. Electronics distributes power in accordance with a verified algorithm.

The algorithm of work, developed by numerous tests and analysis of the car’s behavior under various driving conditions and the condition of the road surface, provides maximum active safety. This makes driving predictable in difficult conditions.

The effectiveness of the used locks and the electronic control system allows all-wheel drive Audi cars to move without slipping on any type of road surface. This property provides excellent dynamic qualities and permeability.

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Advantage quattro

  • - excellent stability and dynamics;
  • - excellent handling and patency;
  • - high reliability.

Disadvantages quattro

  • - increased fuel consumption;
  • - strict requirements for the rules and operating conditions;
  • - high cost of repair in case of failure of elements.

"We strove to create a car that stood firmly and confidently on the road. In the foreground was its technical ability, not its appearance. This concept was a success, as it was worthy, correct and honest."

Hartmut Warkuss (Hartmut Warkuss), Head of Design, Audi AG , 1976-1992

History of quattro


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The issue of front-wheel drive efficiency especially began to worry engineers Audi in the winter of 1976.

During the comparative races, in the snowy mountains of Finland, the military Volkswagen Iltis jeep (75 hp), equipped with large wheels and all-wheel drive connected, left no chance for more powerful prototypes of the Audi front-wheel drive.

In early 1977, the project “Order No. 262" was launched under the leadership of technical director Ferdinand Karl Piech, project manager Walter Trezer and the head of the chassis test department, Jörg Benzinger. The internal code name of the protopip was chosen - A1 .

A1 - it was an improved first-generation Audi 80 model with an extended wheelbase and a five-cylinder turbocharged engine from the future Audi 200 . The rear suspension was the second MacPherson front suspension, rotated 180 degrees.





In the 1978 tests, it was revealed that on sharp bends , the front wheels describe a large arc compared to the rear, so they need to spin faster.

The engineers at Audi were convinced that the time had come to create a car with permanent all-wheel drive and a powerful engine, since the distribution of torque on all four wheels can create more turning force on each wheel, than rear-wheel drive or front-wheel drive cars, and also provide excellent grip and handling on corners.

In the 1972 year, the first generation Audi 80 family debuted. At first it was a two-door sedan, later a four-door sedan and a station wagon appeared. In the 1978 year, the second-generation Audi 80 was introduced, a year later this model debuted in the North American market as the Audi 4000.

Initially, only gasoline “fours” (1.3–1.8 liters, 55–110 hp) were installed on the Audi 80 , in the 1980 year they were offered atmospheric 1 , A 6-liter diesel engine (54 hp), and a year later a modification appeared with a 5-cylinder gasoline engine with a volume of 1.9 liters (115 hp). In the 1982 year, the Eighty got a 5-cylinder 2.1 engine (136 hp) and all-wheel drive quattro .

In the 1984 year, the Audi 80 family was restyled and all five-cylinder modifications received their own designation Audi 90 .







A simple and practical idea came to Franz Tengler , who headed the transmission design department: you need a drilled secondary shaft of the transmission with a length of 263 mm , through which you can transmit torque to two directions.

From the rear end, the shaft carried the drive to the center differential box with manual connection.

Differential transmitted 50% of the torque through the driveshaft to the rear axle, which, in turn, had its own locked differential. The other half of the torque was transmitted to the front axle differential via an output shaft rotating inside the hollow secondary shaft.

The Hollow Shaft made it possible to create a lightweight, compact and efficient all-wheel drive mechanism that practically did not jam.





The decisive breakthrough was that the new all-wheel drive principle was suitable not only for SUVs and trucks, but also for serial passenger cars.

It only remained to choose a name. Among the many options was proposed - "Carat" - an abbreviation of the German "Coupé All Rad Antrieb Turbo", which means "coupe with four-wheel drive and turbocharging." The project manager, Walter Trezer, came up with a better option - quattro . "Ur-quattro" - is used to indicate the first generation of all-wheel drive system.

March 3, 1980 at the Geneva Motor Show, on a raised rotating platform, a white two-door car towered - this was the debut of Audi quattro .

Originally planned for small-scale production of 400 copies of the Audi ur-quattro , due to high demand, it grew into a full-fledged production model and, undergoing constant updates, lasted in the production program until 1991 with the result in 11,452 of vehicles sold.



Audi ur-quattro in digitals

Engine: 2.1 l, 5-cylinder, 2x-valve, turbo






Max speed


Acceleration to 100 km/h


Vehicle weight
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The first quattro was launched in 1980 , and five more all-wheel drive Audi appeared in 1982: the Audi Coupé, Audi 80/90 and Audi 100/200 - a car that set a world record in aerodynamics in the eighties.

The new modifications reflected the fundamental principle of the Audi brand - to offer quattro in every model line - and sold well thanks to the triumphal racing glory.

In September 1986 introduced the new generation Audi 80 B3 , which since 1987 appeared on the European market.

The new model had a new aerodynamic shape and galvanized body, which allowed longer to resist corrosion. Audi B3 was sold worldwide under the brand names Audi 80 or Audi 90 .





In 1988 at the Paris Motor Show, the luxury V8 sedan debuted, which was equipped with an M8 engine and all-wheel drive system. It was equipped with a 3.6- and 4.2-liter engine rated at 250 and 280 hp. respectively.

The car received excellent sound insulation, as well as a comfortable and stylish interior.

In 1990 , the first production S-series sports car was born - the Audi S2 , a descendant of the first quattro.

Audi S2 was produced by a division of quattro GmbH (now Audi Sport GmbH) on the platform Audi 80 (B4) in Neckarsulm (Germany) from 1991 to 1995.



Audi S2 in digitals

Engine: 2226 cm 3 , 5-cylinder, turbo



М 5/6



Маx speed


Acceleration to 100 km/h


Vehicle weight
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In 1994 , the first production car of the sports RS series, jointly developed by Audi AG and Porsche - the Audi RS 2 Avant , was born. It was produced by a division of quattro GmbH (now Audi Sport GmbH) on the Audi 80 (B4) platform in Neckarsulm, Germany.

Renaming the series in A6 / S6 in the 1994 year ended the era of success of the Audi 100 . The new Audi A (x) model designation strategy has replaced. Learn more

Audi RS2 in digitals

Engine: 2226 cm 3 , 5-cylinder, turbo



М 6ступ.



Max speed


Acceleration to 100 km/h


Vehicle weight

In 1995 , for the first time on a model Audi A6 2.5 (140 hp), a combination of the quattro drive and the TDI® engine (Turbo Diesel) Injection) - a diesel power plant with a turbocompressor and a direct fuel injection system.

Also this year was shown as a concept car at the Frankfurt Motor Show - Audi TT . Serial production of the first generation of the model began in 1998, followed by a roadster in 1999. Learn more





The production of the original Audi RS4 Avant B5 quattro (Typ 8D) was introduced by AUDI AG at the end of 1999 for subsequent sale in 2000. The RS4, like its predecessor, the RS2, was only available as Avant - Audi's name for station wagon cars.

The Audi RS4 was a heavy-duty production sports car with a 2.7l V6 Turbo engine developing 387 hp. accelerating the car to 100 km / h - in 4.9 sec. 6030 units were produced between 1999 and 2001. Learn more

For the first time in February 2000 in Geneva, the Audi Allroad was introduced - an all-wheel drive off-road station wagon made on the advanced platform Audi A6 Avant .

This modification differs from the original model by the standard permanent all-wheel drive transmission , air suspension, adjustable ground clearance - 142mm-206mm - with increasing speed, the ground clearance automatically decreased, as well as larger and protected front and rear wings.





In September 2005 , at the Frankfurt International Motor Show, Audi introduced its first SUV - the Audi Q7 . It was equipped with quattro permanent all-wheel drive with a 40:60 torque distribution between the front and rear axles.

The Audi Q7 included an adaptive cruise control (ACC) distance control system, an adaptive air suspension called “adaptive air suspension”, a dynamic cornering light, and a side assist that warns when changing lanes the driver about finding cars in the "dead zone" of the review. Learn more

The first Audi R8 was presented in 2006 at the Paris Motor Show. Even then, the car captivated the public, with its exquisite design developed by Walter de Silva, and unprecedented power.

In the 2007 Audi R8 off the line. The motor is located in the middle. The ratio of front-wheel drive forces is 15:85. The designers ensured the integrity of straightness during braking by installing an electronic control system on the transfer case.

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Audi R8 in digitals





A 6ступ.



Max speed


Acceleration to 100 km/h


The premiere of the Audi Q5 was held at the Beijing Auto Show in April 2008. Audi Q5 is a compact crossover manufactured by AUDI AG since November 2008.

In Audi Q5 , a new development of Audi engineers is installed - a 7-speed robotized gearbox S tronic , designed to transmit torque up to 500 Nm. Quattro permanent four-wheel drive (differential Torsen) transmits torque to all four wheels in a ratio of 40:60 - front axle / rear axle.

The premiere of the third generation of the flagship brand Audi A8 took place December 1, 2009 in Miami at the Design Miami exhibition. Seeing the light in 2010, the base model Audi A8 was equipped with a 3.0-liter TFSI 6-cylinder engine, CVT (multitronic) and quattro drive.

A modular platform with a longitudinal arrangement of the power unit ensured compact design, which allowed shifting the front axle of the Audi A8 15 cm forward. At the same time, this made it possible to improve the weight distribution along the axes. Learn more





The premiere of the Audi RS5 was held at the March 2010 at the Frankfurt Motor Show. The combination of a classic elegant form and the most powerful V8 engine of 4.2 liters, - has high torque and provides impressive power - 450 hp, while allowing the most efficient use of fuel.

Like all powerful Audi models, the RS 5 Coupé is equipped with a quattro drive. It is the first to use the new generation of permanent all-wheel drive quattro : the Torsen differential has been replaced with a new, lighter, with ring gears.

The Audi e-tron 55 quattro is the all-electric mid-size crossover manufactured by Audi AG, which was presented as a concept car at the 2015 Frankfurt Motor Show This is the first production electric car in Europe to be released on sale in 2019.

The Audi e-tron is powered by a 95 kWh battery, which can charge 80% in about 30 minutes with 150 kW fast chargers. For charging at home, there is a standard 11 kW charger that charges it for 8.5 hours .



Audi e-tron in digitals


Power reserve


Max speed *manufacturer restriction


Acceleration to 100 km/h


Charging time *home mode


Emission СO2


On the Audi A4 allroad , the new quattro ultra smart drive will debut. The Audi quattro Ultra system continuously monitors the behavior of the car with the help of many sensors and can quickly and proactively throw traction to another axis, but at the same time providing an economical ride.

The control unit of the system every 10 milliseconds receives and analyzes a lot of parameters: steering angle, longitudinal and lateral acceleration produced by the engine thrust, etc. Based on these data, the electronics activate the coupling at three levels : anticipation, forecasting and response.

Audi e-tron GT - the concept electric car of the German automaker Audi AG. It was presented at the Los Angeles Auto Show in 2018. The car is built on the new platform PPE (Premium Platform Electric) together with Porsche Taycan. Serial production of the model started in 2020. In size and proportion, the concept repeats the production model Audi A7.

The car is equipped with two synchronous electric motors, on the front and rear axles of the chassis. The battery can be charged in two ways, using a cable and through a wireless charging system.



Audi e-tron GT in digitals




Power reserve


Max speed


Acceleration to 100 km/h


Emission СO2
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"Uncompromising machine to gamble away"

So called Audi quattro in 1980.

Generations of quattro


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Officially, Audi never divided the quattro systems into separate generations. Changes in the quattro technologies were introduced into the technical equipment of the company's models.

The main difference in different generations of the quattro all-wheel drive system is the use of different types of differentials in the design.

Generation I




The first generation quattro system was equipped with free-wheel inter-axle and interaxle differentials with the possibility of forced hard locking by a mechanical drive. In the 1981 year the system was modified, the locks began to be switched on using pneumatics. Learn more

Audi quattro I generation:
  • Audi quattro turbo coupe (1984 - 1988)
  • Audi 80/90 (B2) (1984 - 1987)
  • Audi quattro (1980-1991)
  • Audi Sport quattro (1984 - 1985)
  • Audi 100/200 (C3) (1985 - 1987)

Generation II




In 1987 , the free-center differential was replaced by a limited slip limited slip differential Torsen Тype 1. The model was distinguished by the transverse arrangement of the gears of the satellites relative to the drive shaft.

Torque transmission varied in the ratio 50:50 under normal conditions, and when slipping on an axis with better traction, it transmitted up to 80% power.

The rear differential was equipped with an automatic unlock function at a speed above 25 km/h. learn more

Audi quattro II generation:
  • Audi 80/90 (B3) (1986 - 1991)
  • Audi 80 / S2 (B4) (1991 - 1995)
  • Audi RS2 Avant (В4) (1994-1995)
  • Audi 100/200 (С3) (1987 - 1991)
  • Audi 100 / S4 (C4) (1991 - 1994)

Generation III




The 3rd generation quattro system is symmetrical, used only on one Audi V8 model. Moreover, for models with "mechanics" and automatic transmissions, different drives were developed for the device.

In the version with manual transmission, the drive included two Torsen self-locking differentials - between the axles and also on the rear axle, the front end was left with a free differential. That is, the designers completely abandoned the forced blocking.

On the version with automatic transmission, the planetary hydraulic coupling with automatic blocking is used as the center differential. Such a node helped to eliminate the hanging problem.

A car with such a quattro system only stops when hanging one wheel on both axles. Learn more

Generation IV




In 1995 , a electronic lock system was installed for the front and rear free-type differentials. Center differential – Torsen Type 1 or Type 2. The standard mode of torque distribution is 50:50 , with the ability to transfer up to 75% power per axis. Learn more

Audi quattro IV generation:
  • Audi A4 / S4 / RS4 (B5) (1994 - 2001)
  • A6 / S6 / RS6 (C4) и (C5) (1994-2005)
  • Audi A6 Allroad (C5) (1999 - 2005)
  • Audi A8 / S8 (1994-2007)

Generation V




In 2006 , the asymmetrical center differential Torsen Type 3 was introduced. A distinctive feature from previous generations - the satellites are located parallel to the drive shaft.

Cross-axle differentials - free, with electronic lock. The distribution of torque under normal conditions occurs in the proportion 40:60 . When slipping power increases to 70% on the front and to 80% on the rear axle.

Using ESP systems Now you can transmit up to 100% of torque to one axis. Learn more

Audi quattro V generation:
  • Audi A5 (2007 - 2016)
  • Audi A6 (C6) (2004 - 2011)
  • A4 (B8) (2007 - 2015)
  • Audi Q7 (2005 - 2015)

Generation VI




On the model Audi RS5 in 2010, the central differential Torsen was replaced by a differential of its own design based on crown gears, which allows, if necessary, to transmit to the front and rear axles up to 70% and up to 85% of torque, respectively.

This allows the electronic systems of the car to fully control the dynamic characteristics under any conditions of adhesion of wheels to the road surface.

The advantages of such a differential are less compared to Torsen , the mass of the node, vectorization with the use of ESP , the ability to lock even in the event of loss of torque on one of the wheels, the entire system works in full automatic mode under the control of electronics. Learn more

Generation VII

quattro ultra



In 2016 , the installation of the quattro ultra system with two couplings was started. The quattro ultra system can automatically disable rear-wheel drive depending on driving mode. Started to be used with the Audi A4 Allroad (B9).

Using numerous sensors and continuously analyzing the incoming data on traffic dynamics, road conditions and driver actions, he predicts the situation about half a second ahead. And connecting an all-wheel drive takes only a split second.

If the situation becomes unpredictable, for example, when leaving dry asphalt on ice, the system imperceptibly reacts to an unexpected change in the coefficient of friction. Learn more

Generation e-tron




Two electric motors EV (Electric Vehicle) and a traction battery participate in the operation of the car.

The electric motor is located on the front and rear axles of the car and can do without a mechanical gearbox and clutch, since high torque is available from the first revolutions. Audi e-tron has only one forward and one reverse gears.

The new all-wheel drive electric system, combined with advanced suspension solutions, provides optimum traction and handling in all driving situations and in any weather. Learn more

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