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Let The Racing Begin

Reigning Indy 500 champion Ryan Hunter-Reay summarized our feelings on every year's Rolex 24 Hours at Daytona when he said, "The 24 kind of kicks off the year and has become part of my calendar... It definitely helps you get in race shape after a long layoff." We tagged along this year with Audi for what should be a very good race.

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Virtual reality still seems like sci-fi technology, but Audi claims that its VR Experience is coming to some dealers by the end of the decade. The kit allows potential buyers to view Audi's models in every possible equipment combination and color using a set of VR goggles. Headphones even let a person hear the door close or listen to the radio.

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Audi wants to use the names Q2 and Q4 for coming crossover products, but Fiat owns those trademarks and appears unlikely to sell them. It's said that Fiat CEO Sergio Marchionne is loathe to do anything that would aid any company under VW Group CEO Ferdinand Piëch.

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2015 Detroit Auto Show Recap

Episode #413 of the Autoblog Podcast is here, and this week, Dan Roth, Chris Paukert, and Brandon Turkus recap the hot new metal coming out of the 2015 North American International Auto Show in Detroit.

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The Second Annual One Show Automobile Advertising of the Year Awards celebrated the best commercials and print spots of the year during the 2015 Detroit Auto Show. The winners came from all over the world and a variety of brands, and we collected them all right here. Check out the best of 2014 and see if you agree.

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The 2016 Audi Q7 made its global debut at the 2015 Detroit Auto Show, riding atop the Volkswagen Group's MLB platform, which has helped trim 700 pounds of fat.

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Reuters reports that BMW has agreed to pay its Chinese dealers 5.1 billion yuan ($820 million) to help them overcome huge inventories and poor profits last year. Audi and Daimler have are also subsidizing Chinese dealers with hundreds of millions of dollars as the local auto market slows down.

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Audi brings its Prologue concept to CES with a fresh coat of paint, a refreshed interior, autonomous driving technology and hybrid assist for the 4.0-liter twin-turbo V8 to drive itself and its output up to 605 hp and 701 lb-ft of torque.

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A report in Autoweek says public adoption of autonomous technology in vehicles will continue with the next-generation A8, which will be able to navigate on its own up to 37 mph, make its way through traffic, find a parking spot and park itself.

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BMW has reclaimed the luxury-sales crown from Mercedes by a margin of 9,347 cars. Mercedes ruled 2013, but last year BMW sold 339,738 units – a 9.8-percent increase year-on-year – while Mercedes saw its sales go up by 5.7 percent to 330,391 units.

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CES 2015 might as well be called the 2015 Automotive Tech Show, as OEMs and tech companies flock to show off their cutting-edge wares in Las Vegas.

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This month, Audi said it will boost spending by two billion euros ($2.5B US) over the next five years, for a total outlay of 24 billion euros from 2014 to 2019. Something like 70 percent of those billions will be spent on new models, technology like "connectivity and lightweight construction," and factory expansion at its plants in Ingolstadt and Neckarsulm.

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Audi invited Evo scribe Richard Meaden to the Misano circuit in Italy to drive the Audi R18 e-tron quattro - and not just any R18 quattro, were such a thing possible, but the No. 2 car that took first place at Le Mans this year driven by Marcel Fassler, Andre Lotterer and Benoit Treluyer.

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The Audi A3 and S3 sedans aced the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's New Car Assessment Program tests, each scoring five stars overall. The A3 sedan is also a Top Safety Pick+ according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.

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Wolfgang Egger has bounced back and forth between Italy and Germany over the course of his career, and will now be bouncing somewhere else as he reportedly leaves his job as head of Italdesign.

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A report in Autobild claims that Mercedes-Benz is throwing more then $2 billion at an electric car family of vehicles with a program called "Ecoluxe." It would challenge the Tesla Model S and Model X with four offerings, the top of the range being a pair of seven-seaters that could have as much as 610 horsepower.

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Autocar has been told by Audi design boss Marc Lichte that the next A7 will wear the "most radical" design of three future Audi cars, the others being the A6 and A8, all inspired by the Prologue concept unveiled at the LA Auto Show.

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Veteran racer Mattias Ekström campaigns the meanest looking Audi S1 on the block in the FIA World Rallycross Championship. With 600 horsepower on tap, it can reach 60 miles per hour in a claimed 1.9 seconds. However, for Ekstrom's latest race in the Audi pits him against a pint-sized doppelgänger in the form of an RC replica of the rallycross machine.

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A highly original example of Audi's prototypical homologation special hot hatch is going up for auction, expected to fetch between $350,000 and $475,000.

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From drag races to roominess comparison, the Mazda3 came out ahead of the Audi A3 and BMW 1-Series in a diesel-hatchback comparison.

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Audi has announced a limited run of its 2015 RS5 Coupe Sport, with just 75 of the customized, 450-horsepower two-doors being offered up to US customers. Prices start at $87,575, and add unique wheels and a completely reupholstered interior that's been finished in fine Nappa leather.

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