Audi have introduced a new vehicle segment with their Cross Cabriolet quattro concept car which debuted at the Los Angeles Auto show.
The two-door, four-seater concept combines the genes of a typical dynamic soft-top convertible from Audi with the all-round qualities of a fully fledged SUV.
The concept is powered by a longitudinally mounted six-cylinder TDI, producing 179kW and 500Nm of torque, at this stage in its evolution the 3.0 TDI is now more efficient than ever – its average fuel consumption is a mere 7.3 litres of diesel per 100 km.
The concept combines design traits of an Audi convertible, such as a fabric hood and aluminium A-pillar surface, with the dynamics and presence of a SUV.
At 4.62 m long, 1.91 m wide and with a wheelbase of 2.81 m, the Audi Cross Cabriolet quattro has the dimensions of a B-segment vehicle.
Combining two of the most notoriously unsafe car genres, an SUV and convertible, Audi have included an extensive list of passive safety devices. In addition to added body stiffness and roll-over rigidity, the concept has a double underbody that turns the open profile of a convertible body into a closed structure.
The exterior is dominated by the single-frame radiator grille with polished aluminium struts, a unique “Copper Sunset” finish is accompanied by full LED headlights with the now trademark daytime running lights, as well as large 21-inch wheels wrapped with 265/35 R21 tyres.
The interior features a cockpit already markedly angled toward the driver, with seating upholstered in “White Stone” leather. To enhance comfort when driving with the top down, all four seats are equipped with an airscarf function. Air vents on the head restraints serve to compensate for the air turbulence around the occupant’s neck.
A large central LCD colour display finally mates satellite navigation with the ease and detail of Google Earth’s interactive, three-dimensional atlas of the world. To enter a navigation destination, there is no longer any need to enter the address by hand. The driver can click on an image in the Google Earth user interface and be directed to the identified destination.
Acoustics are provided by a Bang & Olufsen sound system derived from the unit used in the A8 luxury saloon. This incorporates a 505 watt amplifier and the manufacturer’s own sound algorithm, which enables the occupant of every seat to enjoy the full splendor of the system’s audio quality.
The 176 kW 3.0-litre diesel propels the car from 0 to 100 km/h in just 7.2 seconds and has a top speed of 240 km/h. However the new 3.0 TDI is perhaps more well known for its especially clean exhaust which cuts the already low level of untreated emissions further, by more than 90 percent.
Power is transferred to the ground through what else but Audi’s highly acclaimed quattro permanent four-wheel drive system. In normal driving conditions, 40 percent of engine power reaches the front wheels and 60 percent the rear wheels, however the centre differential can direct up to 65 percent of the power to the front wheels and up to 85 percent to the rear wheels making it surprisingly agile both on and off road.
Electronic ride height adjustment varies ground clearance by up to 40 millimeters at the touch of a button.
Stopping is a task trusted to ceramic brakes on all four wheels, which compared with conventional steel discs, ceramic brakes not only last four times longer, up to 300,000 kilometres, but also offer high resistance to fading. Firm grip on the brake disc is guaranteed at the front by 6-piston monobloc aluminium brake calipers, and at the rear by floating-caliper brakes.
The Audi Cross Cabriolet quattro is equipped with Audi drive select, as optionally available in the current generation of the bestselling Audi A4. This allows you to preselect three highly individual configurations for the engine and gear-change characteristics, and the adaptive shock absorbers. The result is a car that can be enjoyed in completely different ways and that offers a huge potential in the field of efficiency.