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Audi Produces First Hybrid to Win 24 Hours of Le Mans

Automaker’s R18 E-Tron Quattro Racecar Makes History in France

06/29/2012 (press release: CambridgePRGroup) // Nashua, N.H. // Audi of Nashua

Audi has long been a leader in alternative fuel racing, having produced the first diesel-powered car to ever win the 24 Hours of Le Mans back in 2006. Now, six years later, the German luxury automaker has set yet another milestone in the world of endurance racing thanks to the Audi R18 e-tron quattro, which was the first hybrid vehicle to win the grueling mid-June race.

Helmed by previous 24 Hours of Le Mans winners André Lotterer, Marcel Fässler and Benoît Tréluyer, the winning Audi hybrid was able to travel 3,201.18 miles in 24 hours, which is roughly the same as driving from Portland, Maine to San Francisco, California. The German automaker took the top three spots in a race widely known for testing the limits of automotive engineering, with the second-place car also being an Audi hybrid.

“The lessons learned on the race track make their way to the showroom, and this result shows how reliable and powerful Audi’s hybrid technology can be,” said Larry Bedell, general manager of Audi of Nashua, an Audi dealer in New Hampshire. “Audi proved once again that it has superior engineering, and we can’t wait until its latest hybrid technology arrives stateside in the Q5 later this year.”

The 2013 Audi Q5 compact SUV will receive a mid-cycle refresh before it arrives at Audi dealerships this fall, and a new hybrid model will be among the updates. Slated to become the first Audi hybrid to go on sale in America, the 2013 Q5 Hybrid won’t be lacking in performance, housing a turbocharged 2.0-liter engine producing 211 horsepower and a 54-horsepower electric motor. That output will be sent to all four wheels through a standard quattro all-wheel-drive system, allowing the Q5 Hybrid to reach a top speed of 140 mph.

Of course, even as they win races, hybrids are supposed to improve gas mileage, and the 2013 Q5 Hybrid won’t disappoint thanks to its manufacturer-estimated rating of roughly 34 mpg combined. That fuel efficiency comes with the help of a 1.3-kWh lithium-ion battery pack, which enables the Audi SUV to drive nearly two miles on electricity alone at speeds of up to 37 mph.

Another alternative powertrain will be joining the Q5’s U.S. lineup sometime next year, built around Audi’s 3.0-liter V6 TDI clean-diesel engine. The diesel Audi Q5 is expected to churn out 245 horsepower and 428 pound-feet of torque, all while returning an estimated 37 mpg combined. Even the Q5’s gas-only engines will be upgraded for the 2013 model year, with the existing 2.0-liter four-cylinder getting a 24-horsepower boost for a total of 225 horsepower, and a new 3.0-liter V6 unit coming with 272 horsepower.

“Audi’s diesel engines have already earned a reputation for their stellar combination of gas mileage and torque, and it’s clear that the automaker’s hybrid technology is going to have a lot to offer customers,” Bedell noted. “The 2013 Q5’s new and updated powertrains will add even more capability and fuel efficiency to one of the most versatile compact luxury SUVs on the market.”

About Audi of Nashua:

A five-time winner of Audi’s prestigious Magna Society award, Audi of Nashua invites those in search of the world’s finest vehicles to explore its inventory of new and used Audi cars for sale. New Hampshire Audi owners will also find a complete selection of Audi parts and accessories, as well as expert Audi service from factory-trained technicians. Discover the quality, performance and engineering that make every Audi special by checking their inventory at www.audinashua.com, liking them on Facebook at www.facebook.com/audiofnashua, or calling their dealership, located at 170 Main Dunstable Road in Nashua, N.H., at 603-578-3744.

Social Media Tags:Audi dealer in New Hampshire, Audi Q5, Audi of Nashua

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