Audi has announced a shake up of how it brands model variants. Starting with the fourth-generation A8, engine displacement names will be ditched in favour of a two-digit power rating number.
For example, the number 30 will be used for cars with between 81kW and 96kW (110 and 130 metric horsepower). The only other confirmed rating ranges are 45 for models with between 169kW and 185kW (230 and 250 metric horsepower), and 70 for vehicles with over 400kW (544 metric horsepower).
In every case, the power rating is followed by the drivetrain type: TFSI for turbocharged petrol engines, TDI for turbo-diesel, g-tron for vehicles powered by compressed natural gas, and e-tron for hybrid or fully electric models.
The new variant names will begin rolling out when sales of the new A8 commence later this year in Europe. For the next-generation A8, the 310kW V6 diesel model will be branded as the A8 50 TDI instead of A8 3.0 TDI, while the 250kW V6 petrol model will be known as the A8 55 TFSI not as the A8 3.0 TFSI.
New models will adopt the power rating-based variant naming scheme as they're launched. Existing models will continue on as is until the "new model year changeover in [the northern] summer of 2018".
The R8, and S and RS variants, are unaffected by the move to power ratings.
Dr Dietmar Voggenreiter, Audi's head of sales and marketing, explained the move away from displacement designations thusly: “As alternative drive technologies become increasingly relevant, engine displacement as a performance attribute is becoming less important to our customers.
"The clarity and logic of structuring the designations according to power output makes it possible to distinguish between the various performance levels."