Audi Hypercar Is a Matter of "When" Not "If" Says Audi Sport Boss

Stephan Winkelmann and Audi R8 V10 Plus Spyder 1 photo
Photo: Audi
It looks like Mercedes-AMG might start a trend among the German Holy Trinity of the automotive world with its impending Project ONE hypercar as Audi is quick to announce it will do one as well.
BMW is remaining quiet at this time with the somewhat underwhelming i8 hybrid being the closest thing the Bavarians have to a purpose-built sports car. And that's strictly visually speaking because the Munich-based manufacturer has sedans that are quicker than the i8.

Audi is already in a better place than its neighbor from the South thanks to the R8 supercar range, but even that pales in comparison to the more extreme Italian exotics or, indeed, the Mercedes-AMG Project ONE.

Fans of the brand can rest assured, the former head of Lamborghini and the current leading figure of Audi Sport, Stephan Winkelmann, confirmed its sporty division is thinking about a halo car for the four-ringed company.

"I'm very keen on working on this in the future," Winkelmann told Automotive News. "I think not only the brand deserves it, but there is a demand outside, and the [customers] are looking into it." However, there's something else that's in high demand at this time, and Winkelmann admits that's what his division will keep itself busy for the foreseeable future.

We're talking, of course, about crossovers and SUVs. Audi has just one RS version of a high-rider at this point, and it's one of the smallest of the bunch: the RSQ3. That can't remain like this, especially since both BMW and Mercedes-Benz have M and AMG versions respectively for most of their SUVs.

But Audi Sport has even more on its plate right now. New versions of the RS4, RS5, and RS6 - with all their derivatives - are expected over the coming years, and - for now, at least - these form the bread and butter for the company.

Plus, there are the two electric SUVs planned for the next two years: the e-tron quattro and e-tron Sportback. Audi Sport will have a go at them too, but the go-faster versions will follow with a two year gap from the regular models.

So, we're talking full booking for Audi Sport until 2021 or so. Does that mean we can expect work on the promised hypercar to start about then? Winkelmann will not be drawn into making any clear promises, but he insists the R8 will not remain at the top of the Audi range forever. "If you want to build up," he says, "you have to have always something on top."
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About the author: Vlad Mitrache
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"Boy meets car, boy loves car, boy gets journalism degree and starts job writing and editing at a car magazine" - 5/5. (Vlad Mitrache if he was a movie)
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