The latest Audi V8 engine technology is at the heart of the most powerful and luxurious version of the Audi allroad quattro to date. The new allroad quattro 4.2 is due to go on sale in Britain in the summer of 2003, combining a 300PS version of the compact 4.2-litre, 40-valve V8 petrol engine first seen in the new S4 quattro with a fittingly extensive equipment list.
The increased power is delivered via a five-speed Tiptronic automatic transmission with a Sport function that activates earlier downward gear changes and later upward shifts, and is accompanied by a strong and unmistakable V8 engine note.
The new V8 is 52mm shorter and around 5 kilograms lighter than equivalents in the A6 and S6 quattro, thanks to repositioning or redesign of certain components, more extensive use of magnesium and the addition of a new chain drive for the camshafts. This space efficiency eliminates the need to extend the front end of the car - a process which is normally necessary for the accommodation of the larger V8s in the A6 - and so preserves the allroad quattro’s proven off-road capability by keeping overhangs as short as possible.
The Audi allroad quattro offers an exceptional compromise between the comfort and refinement of a family estate car and the versatility and all-terrain capability of a fully-fledged off-roader. It takes the celebrated permanent four-wheel-drive quattro concept a stage further with the addition of four-level air suspension that gives the allroad quattro body up to 208mm of ground clearance – more than any other comparable ‘crossover’ vehicle. The optional Low Range transmission for manual-gearbox versions (2.7 T quattro and 2.5 TDI quattro) also helps to maximise traction when needed.
Pricing and standard specification for the new allroad quattro 4.2 in the UK have yet to be confirmed. Equipment levels will reflect the newcomer’s position at the head of the allroad range, which currently includes the 2.5 TDI quattro at £29,415 OTR and the 2.7 T quattro at £33,080 OTR.
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