We've been speculating, applying the magnifying glass to spy shots and just plain wishing that the rumors were true. They are – Audi is set to debut the Quattro concept car at the Paris Motor Show in celebration of its famous all-wheel-drive system's 30th anniversary. Drawing its inspiration from the original 1980 Audi Ur-Quattro and using some underpinnings from the current RS5, the Quattro concept features a shortened wheelbase, lower roofline and a sub-3,000 pound curb weight.
The original Ur-Quattro weighed in under 3,000 pounds and featured a turbocharged five-cylinder engine paired with a five-speed manual. Keeping in line with that spirit, the Quattro concept ditches the V8 and dual-clutch transmission from the RS5 in favor of a turbocharged inline five-cylinder engine and six-speed manual gearbox. Power output for the Quattro concept is rated at 408 horsepower and 354 pound-feet of torque. All that energy is put to the ground through Audi's famous quattro torque-vectoring all-wheel-drive system, which in this case is setup with a 40:60 rear-biased torque split. The weight savings mixed with the power output create a vehicle with a power-weight ratio on par with that of the Audi R8 5.2 FSI.
Since this IS a modern Audi, it features stylish exterior features and a wonderful cabin space. The seats are leather-lined Sparco units that weight in at just 40 pounds apiece. The Quattro concept also makes use of the Audi MMI infotainment system. In this application, MMI includes a slew of screens useful for rally racing like classically-styled round gauges and a page for pace notes. On the outside, the Quattro concept boasts the signature Audi LED treatment, but this time it's in the form of headlamps that adjust their direction both vertically and horizontally, as well as being able to open fully or close to a slit.
This is an exciting concept that pays homage to a true motoring classic. If Audi doesn't find a way to put a version of this into production, we're sure that four-ring fanboys around the world will storm Ingolstadt.