Audi is not playing "nice" with its two main German rivals anymore. In fact, Ingolstadt is preparing an arsenal so powerful that some may even start accusing Germany of another world war. Of course this is in the motor arena where "wars" are fought in friendly territories like engines and powertrains, race tracks and cup holders. And so it will be when the new R8 V10 - Audi says it can't be called RS8 because that might confuse it with a high-performance A8 which may or may not happen - debuts with its 5.2-litre V10. Of course we've known all along this was the type of equipment to be fitted, but what we initially didn't realize was that Audi would take the bull by its sharpest thorns and go turbo on us with this! Yep folks, R8 V10 will debut next year with the same firepower handed to the RS 6. In essence we are talking about 572 wild German horses confined only by ten cylinders, translating to a sub 4.0 second time on the 0 - 100km/h flight, with a cruise limiter of 200 mph.
Audi has been denying all of this turbo talk, even when questioned about the test mule that infamously caught fire at Nordscheife last year, saying the engine could easily provide the required horses, but cooling it would be the main bone of contention. Now ladies and gentlemen, that bone has been chewed and spat and V10 twin-turbo is a go. Speaking to Autocar head of Audi powertrain development Wolfgang Hatz said: "The car is now signed off, and will appear during the second quarter of 2009. I can't say much about it until then. The cooling is no problem now."
VW Group's greatest cooling problem on a road car so far has been Bugatti Veyron, but they managed ok there and learnt some cooling lessons along the way. The cooling system has also helped in V12 TDI prototype, a system that provides up to 20 percent more cold air into the radiators and a roof air vent that works with the turbos.
In a separate development it seems the upcoming 2.5-litre 340 bhp TT RS will not be labeled as such. According to our source, only Porsche can use the moniker RS as suffix (one that comes after another word) in the VW Group. Audi can use it, but only as prefix, meaning in front of something else, like RS 6 or RS 4 etc.