CAR sat down with a "high-placed Audi source" at the European launch of the Q5 and was able to pry out a few details about the automaker's future products.
To begin with, the next RS4 will use a retuned version of the supercharged, 3.0-liter V6 due to be fitted on the next S4. Audi's unnamed engineering mole said that the decision to go with the supercharged six was primarily to provide higher torque at lower RPMs. With the base engine putting out 290 hp and 310 lb.-ft. of torque, it's assumed that the tweaked version should crest the 350 hp mark and just under 400 lb.-ft. of torque. How that will play in the inevitable comparison test between the RS4's V8-powered competition remains to be seen.
The A1 is still set to debut in 2010, but despite its aim at MINI, Audi won't resort to retro styling. Based off the next Polo, the A1 will spawn several variants, including three- and five-door hatches, a convertible and an off-roader. While Audi has no plans to build anything smaller than the A1, it does plan to increase the size of the A3, along with offering a Q3 CUV inspired by the Cross Coupe Quattro concept.
And what of the R8? The V10 version is on its way this fall, but a turbocharged variant isn't in the cards, nor is the V12 TDI. And while Audi has continued to deny that it's working on an R4, CAR's source says that there's still room in the automaker's lineup for another R-badged vehicle.