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Audi Plans To Kill Off V10 And W12 Engines, PPE Platform Comes Into Focus

When it comes to big displacement, the Volkswagen Group has two examples of what it means to go over the board in terms of internal combustion. The 5.2-liter V10 found in the Audi R8 and Lamborghini Huracan is one of those big engines, but the title of king of the hill goes to the 6.0-liter W12 in the Bentley Continental GT and Bentayga. Regrettably, both might be gone in a few years.
Audi R8 RWS 83 photos
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In an interview with Automotive News Europe, board member for technical development Peter Mertens made it clear that changes are inevitable. On the subject of eliminating “up to 40 percent” of Audi’s drive systems in the foreseeable future, the official replied: “We will thin out our engine-transmission combinations, but entire engine families might also disappear. Do we really need a V10 and W12 for the next generation of cars?”

Boo and hiss! And for good reason considering the V10 is a marvel of free-breathing engineering and the W12 packs a considerable punch. Such a decision shouldn’t surprise you, not when you consider the financial burden brought by the Dieselgate scandal to pretty much all of the VW group.

The so-called Premium Platform Electric is the focus of the company in the long run, an electric vehicle architecture Audi is co-developing with Porsche. Shortened to PPE, the platform is crucial for the e-mobility goals of both brands. In terms of volume, 60 percent of the platform comes from Audi, and the remaining 40 percent from Porsche. In Audi’s case, the PPE will mainly benefit future compact executive (A4) and mid-size (A6) vehicles.

With the future of the V10 and W12 uncertain, it’s important to highlight that V8s are here to stay.We get questioned about the V8, and in particular the diesel, but I cannot imagine we will do without it,” said Mertens. "We have a very important group of customers that really wants eight-cylinder engines in larger vehicles. Will it exist forever? No, but [it will] for a rather long time.”

Before joining Audi in November 2016, Mertens worked as senior vice president of research and development at Volvo from 2011 to 2016. He is credited as the architect behind Volvo’s demise of big engines. Volvo’s current largest internal combustion engine is the 2.0-liter four-cylinder Drive-E.

 
 
 
 
 

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