Rumors have floating around for years that Audi has been planning to develop a small entry-level, mid-engine sports car, and Auto Motor und Sport is now claiming the so-called R4 will debut in 2013. The R4 is expected to be based on Audi's second e-tron concept that debuted at the Detroit Auto Show last January although it will use internal combustion power instead of the electric drive of the concept.
The R4 is expected to weigh in at a comparatively modest 2,500 pounds and offer a choice of gas or diesel inline-four engines. Gasoline propulsion would come from a 180 horsepower 1.4-liter TSI unit while the high-mileage option would be the 170 horsepower version of the 2.0-liter TDI used in the TT and the Golf GTD. The R4 is also expected to be priced well below the TT with a base of about €22,000 (about $27,000). A tip of the hat to Chris!