Auto China motor show: Audi takes aim at Porsche – Wheels.ca

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Auto China motor show: Audi takes aim at Porsche

Might 9, 2016

Stephan Winkelmann, that left Lamborghini earlier this year to become head of Audi’s Sport division, introduces the Brand-new Audi TT RS at the 2016 Auto China prove to in Beijing. Behind him or her is the Brand-new Audi A4L – a stretched version of the A4 that will certainly be sold only in China.

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BEIJING — The Chinese economy might be slowing, yet this is still the world’s largest automotive market. Analysts expect 26 million light vehicles to be sold in China this year. Compare that to the 17.5 million vehicles sold in the U.S. in 2015.

The biggest sellers, by far, are SUVs, which increased their sales 52 per cent over last year. They were once seen as agricultural vehicles, yet they’re now recognized as not only prestigious and comfortable, yet rather capable on this country’s poor-quality roads.

It can easily be difficult to own a auto in the initial place here, where you need to apply to buy a licence plate prior to buying a vehicle. Often, for residents of the congested cities, you need to prove you have actually a parking space, too.

So bigger is better, to match a lot more individuals in to one vehicle, and stretched is ideal of all. Lots of of the vehicles on display at this week’s Auto China motor prove to are long wheelbase models. all of the western manufacturers brought LWB versions of their worldwide models simply for the Chinese market.

But horsepower is still king, of course, and premium Western vehicles are rather much in necessity for the status-proud Chinese.

There were three major debuts here this week that will certainly make their means across the Pacific soon to Canada. Audi introduced its latest salvo in the sports auto wars: a 400 hp TT RS that’s aimed squarely at Porsche.

The hot five-cylinder gets a 60 hp improve from the most up to date generation and additionally makes 354 lbs.-ft. of torque. That’s enough to accelerate from standstill to 100 km/h in simply 3.7 seconds. A roadster version will certainly cover the same ground in 3.9 seconds.

The TT RS will certainly be available in Europe this fall, yet it will certainly come to Canada some time next year. There’s no official word on Canadian pricing, yet in Europe, it will certainly cost almost double the rate of the base TT, which sells for $51,600 in Canada.

All this muscle pushes it past Porsche’s Brand-new 718 Boxster S, which makes 350 hp and covers zero-to-100 km/h in an extra half-second at best. The Porsche will certainly additionally be much much less costly, though, starting at $78,000.

RELATED: Porsche Boxster and Cayman will certainly be rebranded as the 718.

It was probably no coincidence that Porsche chose the Beijing prove to to debut its Brand-new 718 Cayman, which is the hardtop version of the four-cylinder Boxster. There were no surprises along with the unveiling, due to the fact that it is now mechanically identical to its soft-top sibling.

The Brand-new Cayman is additionally $2,400 much less expensive in the two horsepower versions compared to the Boxster. The 718 Cayman starts at $61,500, and the 718 Cayman S starts at $75,600.

This German horsepower war means the Brand-new Audi TT RS is positioned a lot more closely as an alternative to the base Porsche 911 Carrera, which starts at simply over 6 figures in Canada and makes 370 hp from its 6 cylinders.

There will certainly be plenty of selections on the Brand-new Audi to guidance improve the price, of course, including sport suspension along with adaptive magnetic damping, and a fully connected cabin that uses the auto as a wifi hotspot. In Europe, it will certainly be available along with innovative Matrix OLED rear lights, which do not cast shadows or demand reflectors. Canadian regulations will certainly probably prohibit this on our models.

A 7-speed S-tronic transmission will certainly be standard — there’s no manual option — as well as four divide driving modes and the fully digital virtual cockpit display on current TT models.

The newly-refreshed Lexus IS additionally broke cover here this week, showing a a lot more aggressive look yet sustaining the revised powertrains of the third-generation model.

Lexus says the sedan has actually “a daring Brand-new style direction,” and it’s not kidding. You’ll either adore it or hate it. The front grille appears even larger compared to before, and it folds spine at the top to make the auto appear lower.

The headlights are redesigned to appear more squinting, while the front air intakes are huge.

The car’s profile lines are sharper, and the 17-inch wheels now come standard as 10-spoke alloys along with a bright machined finish.

The auto on the stand here was the F-Sport version, which has actually a slightly differently patterned black grille, and large, functional brake ducts.

It wasn’t feasible to see inside the car, yet Lexus says a 10.3-inch infotainment screen now replaces the 7-inch screen as standard, while Lots of upgrades have actually been provided to the interior surfaces and instrumentation.

Freelance writer Mark Richardson is a normal contributor to Toronto Star Wheels. To reach him, email wheels@thestar.ca and put his name in the subject line.

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