Audi has built an interesting sports car to draw a direct relationship to its all-conquering R18 e-tron quattro racecar that will head to Le Mans in June for the 24-hour race. The Audi TT ultra quattro concept infuses extra sportiness into the coupe with a weight loss program that has seen 660 lb (300kg) shed from the 2.0T quattro car.
Weight-saving measures include:
The concept was unveiled at Wörthersee 2013, which is an annual event for VW and Audi enthusiasts held in Austria. Visitors will see the car for the first time and get a better understating of its 2449 lb mass combined with a 310hp 2.0TFSI engine. This combination is said to reach 0-62mph in an impressive 4.2sec, thanks to a power to weight ratio of 8 lb/hp.
As Audi points out, the current TT is already lithe, with its body weighing 454 lb, plus an additional 216 lb for the detachable panels. However, the project team shed a total of 220 lb from the car with the use of carbon-fiber reinforced polymer (CFRP) in the trunk, center tunnel, B-pillars, roof and hood. There was also some magnesium added to the floor and for hinge reinforcement to reduce weight further. The rear wing was also made from carbon fiber, and it's mounted on milled aluminum uprights, with matching end plates. With the carbon weave was left exposed on the car, while the remaining bodwork was painted in Crystal White.
Inside, you'll find carbon on the door trim, center console and cross-bracing that replaces the rear seat. Seats from the R8 GT were also added, saving 48. Lb alone.
Taking the concept to the next stage, Audi replaced the steel coil springs with fiberglass-reinforced plastic (FRP) parts - the long glass fibers twisted together and impregnated with epoxy resin. A machine wraps additional fibers around this core at alternating angles to act in compression or tension, contributing a further 13 lb saving.
The lightweight construction dropped 660 lb from the weight of a production TT 2.0T and hopefully signifies the direction of future Audi models where performance will be increased with weight loss and optimization.