While the general populace will likely remain confused, automotive enthusiasts will now be able to differentiate between Audi’s all-wheel-drive system and its performance sports car subsidiary.
The company has officially taken its Quattro GmbH division and renamed it Audi Sport GmbH. Quattro (which means four) will now only refer to the all-wheel drive system and Sport (which means sport) will denote the high-performance RS cars, Audi-exclusive customization, and customer motorsport.
This was long overdue. We all love the iconic road and rally car, and it’s nice to be reminded of it, but you can only stretch the Quattro name in so many different directions. It’s also nice to see Audi Sport live on in some variant of petroleum-powered motorsport after the diesel emissions scandal forced the company to leave WEC for Formula E.
Audi Sport plants to launch eight new performance-plus models over the next 18 months. The company was not, however, willing to expand on what those vehicles might be. Although it did say that it would be increasing the current number of Audi Sport dealerships from 370 to 600 by the end of next year. This isn’t wishful thinking on the automaker’s part — the increase is being done to meet consumer demand. The sporting subsidiary has seen its sales double over the last five years.
Stephan Winkelmann has led Quattro GmbH since March 2016 and will continue on as CEO as Audi Sport opens dealerships and releases new cars.
“The subsidiary’s focus is to create the most prestigious models in the portfolio of Audi AG,” the company said in a statement.
Audi Sport’s stable is currently occupied by the RS 3, RS 3 LMS, RS Q3, RS 6 Avant, RS 7 Sportback, TT RS, R8, and S8 plus. You can speculate on where the company might find room for an additional eight RS and S plusses.
[Images: Audi AG]