On Sun, 30 Nov 2008 13:01:44 +0100, Wolfgang Pawlinetz
Wolfgang, I don't think people are cheapskates for buying the fwd
Audis, but I do feel that the entire reason for buying an Audi is the
Quattro system. Audi didn't make their money on fwd cars. When they
came out with the Quattro here in the states (82, 84?) their sales
began to rise. There are scores of fwd cars out there, many of them
good, but there is only one Quattro along with numerous other awd
systems that are inferior. I would venture a guess that Quattro
accounts for 98% of sales in the U.S.
Audi dominated the rally scene in Europe and the States during in the
80s because of Quattro. Their entry into racing was also very
successful. I believe they dominated much of the Euro racing in those
days and each win caused them a weight penalty. The Sports Car Club
of America (SCCA) would not allow Quattros in any of their race
classes because of the distinct advantage over rwd and fwd. Audi and
their Quattro have dominated any number of race scenes, but especially
LeMans in recent years, and the Petite LeMans series here in the
I have driven many fwd Audis at Audi sponsored driving events and they
do not compare to Quattro. They are good cars, no doubt about that,
but my choice for any car would be Quattro or rwd. If Audi was
suddenly to stop production of Quattro, my next choice would be the
Nisson GT-R or one of the MBs AMGs. It would not be an Audi fwd.
And, I agree with you that the Audi fwd is an extremely good car.
There are at least two types of Quattro system.
The longitudinal engine in an A4 A5 A6 A8 S4 S6 (et cetera) has Torsen full
time 4wd, whereas the transverse engine in the A3 S3 TT (et cetera) has the
Haldex electronic controlled clutch system which is not full time 4wd, but
front wheel drive most of the time.
I begin to understand the different preception now.
I just checked Audis used car website in Austria and of all Audis
currently offered there (~3600 units) ~ 1200 are Quattros. All others
are obviously Fronts.
Audis had a fairly good reputation in europe already long before they
increased their sales in the US, so we have a different perception. In
the premium class over here basically only Mercedes, BMW and Audi
dominate. Lexus here has a very hard time to even be acknowledged as a
high class car (Lexus owners: no offense)
I agree, but one could also see that as an excellent marketing plot
because, and let me play the devils advcate now, for the daily commute
on the motorway in california (BTDT) you don't need a Q.
I understand and agree that the reason for their big success in
competition conditions is the quattro. However, I assume you've made
the same experience, that is between racetrack and daily real world
driving complete universes exists.
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