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by Tim Beissmann

The Audi RS5 TDI concept has been unleashed in Leipzig, potentially previewing the first ever diesel-powered RS model.

Released in celebration of the ‘TDI’ diesel engine family’s 25th anniversary, the RS5 TDI Coupe concept trades the production model’s 4.2-litre V8 petrol engine for a twin-turbocharged 3.0-litre V6 TDI diesel unit with an electric supercharger.

The triple-charged engine produces 283kW of power at 4200rpm and 750Nm of torque between 1250-2000rpm – leaving it 48kW down on the petrol V8 for power but up a whopping 320Nm for torque.

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All that power and torque is distributed to all four wheels via an eight-speed automatic transmission and the car maker’s quattro system.

Audi has not released official performance data, though the RS5 TDI concept is said to accelerate from 0-100km/h in approximately 4.0 seconds, hit an electronically limited top speed of 280km/h, and consume less than 5.0 litres of fuel per 100km on the combined cycle. In comparison, the RS5 V8 takes 4.5sec to hit triple figures and uses 10.5L/100km combined.

The role of the electric supercharger, dubbed an ‘e-booster’, is to force air into the induction system at very low engine speeds, priming the smaller of the two turbochargers so it can react faster when the throttle is depressed, reducing turbo lag.

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The triple-charged engine is based on the new-generation 3.0-litre TDI V6 that was unveiled earlier this month. The base engine – tipped to debut in the all-new Audi A4 later this year – will be offered in 160kW and 200kW tunes.

Though unconfirmed at this stage, the 283kW version could enter production as early as next year, used to power the first ever RS TDI models.

Audi broke with tradition last year when it released the SQ5, which became the first diesel-powered model in its ‘S’ performance stable, powered by a 230kW/650Nm 3.0-litre twin-turbo V6.

Click the Photos tab for more images of the Audi RS5 TDI concept.




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