RE: Audi to make Seven-alike roadster?

RE: Audi to make Seven-alike roadster?

Wednesday 15th March 2006

Audi to make Seven-alike roadster?

Bike-maker link means 700kg and 250bhp


Caterham Seven: inspiration
Caterham Seven: inspiration
Rumours about a low-weight, Caterham-alike sports car emerging from (of all manufacturers) Audi, have been circulating for a few weeks. They first emerged in an Austrian magazine, Kleine Zeitung, which suggested that Audi and Austrian motorcycle maker KTM have been jointly and secretly developing a sporty roadster.

The 700kg Audi-KTM roadster would be purist in approach, inspired by the Seven but more motorbike-like -- suggestions are that you'll need a helmet to drive it -- and that it'll arrive in 2007.

Motive power is likely to come from a 250bhp 2.0-litre TFSI engine -- destined for the next S3. If true, it'll possess a power/weight ratio akin to that of the Ferrari 599 GTB.

There's no word yet on whether it'll happen but Audi boss Martin Winterkorn is believed to be in favour of the project, with a decision on the cards soon. Should it happen, expect a revelation at the Bologna Motor Show in December.

We don't have pix but Dutch artist Michiel Van Den Brink has produced sketches of the machine (see link below).

Author
Discussion

Ace sportscars

Original Poster:

26 posts

191 months

Wednesday 15th March 2006
quotequote all
Hmm...judging by the sketches it looks like a mish mash of a Renault Spider and a Dax Kamala...I don't think Caterham will be too worried just yet

darren

94 posts

257 months

Wednesday 15th March 2006
quotequote all
Don't these guys read brand management books? This likely won't work for the same reason Ferrari don't do a "599 Transit" - it's addressing a different market to its usual buyers. If I'm buying a roadster at likely Audi prices (I mention that because I want to specifically exclude the success of the Mazda MX5/Miata which was relatively cheap) solely for an Audi badge, am I the type of person who wants the inconvenience of having to put a helmet on to drive a car!? I've driven an Ariel Atom, Radical SR3, Redline Classic (see review in Pistonheads), Elise, and a few other 7-type cars, and to me the KTM connection is at best a tenuous attempt to try to capture some of the Freestyle motoX mania sweeping the globe. It's still an Audi. Motorbike riders who like the visceral feel of a motorbike will buy a motorbike; they'll have a more practical car to tow the bikes with. Sad gits with no taste who yearn for dangerous and exciting times they missed out on in their youth will buy this.

But, as a brand awareness exercise (i.e. releasing a concept and not putting it into production) it's pretty good.

>> Edited by darren on Wednesday 15th March 11:11

mk1fan

9,942 posts

198 months

Wednesday 15th March 2006
quotequote all
Good luck to them.

There is a market for trackday specials so congratulations Audi on wanting to offer a choice from a Global manufacturer. Will undoubtably be better built than the others and you could negociate a bigger discount when you buy your everyday and your track car from the same dealer!!!

Audi seem to be wanting to change their image to more driver focus cars - switching the quattro system to run 60-40 rear split and the new RS4 suspension / bodywork changes.

I hope that Audi realise the customers in this market don't want neutral / understeer handling and dead steering feel but fast, nimble lightweight toys!!

bertie

8,367 posts

257 months

Wednesday 15th March 2006
quotequote all
It looks rather more Lotus 340r to me, and I rather like it!

What with this and the Audi R9 supercar and the new RS4 I think they're doing good things!

cj_eds

1,567 posts

194 months

Wednesday 15th March 2006
quotequote all
I'd say Audi have spotted one of two markets they want to be in - either track day specials or the market for more accessible sports cars like MX-5's, Elises etc. It does look a wee bit 340r inspired.


NickFRP

5,062 posts

208 months

Wednesday 15th March 2006
quotequote all
Well the trys in the sketch make it look like its more for Off Road use thatn track and speed

dinkel

26,041 posts

231 months

Wednesday 15th March 2006
quotequote all
It has KTM-stylee off-road tires though . . . looks great.

RubenRocket

37 posts

194 months

Wednesday 15th March 2006
quotequote all
Owning various bikes and a car with no windscreen I do not mind wearing a helmet at all, but I just don't see the point of this car...

The only really nice Audi I can think of is the 'ur-quattro' from ages ago, so anything should be better than those hairdressers' convertibles they currently make anyway, but there actually already exists something exactly like they are planning (and yes, it IS Audi powered)... ->

www.pistonheads.com/doc.asp?c=47&i=12499

uldis

251 posts

208 months

Wednesday 15th March 2006
quotequote all
These two other images look more road oriented.
Agree that they would not bring in their usual clients, more like real drivers (if the thing drives decently)





Very 340R inspired, and I do like it.




And if they manage to keep it at around 35K euros here...


>> Edited by uldis on Wednesday 15th March 13:06

dinkel

26,041 posts

231 months

Wednesday 15th March 2006
quotequote all
The Donkervoort is a luxourious Seven, a bit bigger and indeed Audi-powered. It still is a 7ish car . . .

If you want something else there's not that much choice. I couldn't help thinking 70s buggy and all that.

This is still in drawings-mode . . . GX3 anyone?

January:
"The Austrian "Kleine Zeitung" is reporting that Audi is preparing a secret car together with Austrian motorcycle company KTM.
The secret car is said to arrive 2007 and will be a "puristic roadster".
The project has "the sympathy" of Audi's boss Dr. Winterkorn, but will be decided in 2 to 3 months time by Audi.

A prototype shall be produced soon and the world premiere of the roadster could be at the Bologna motor show end of 2006. Start of the production, which will be in Austria, could be in 2007. Estimated price is around 35.000 Euro."

35K euro's is a nice target for a 250 hp car. And, it's dzjermann . . .

havoc

26,703 posts

208 months

Wednesday 15th March 2006
quotequote all
The rear-3/4 shot makes it look front-engined, the other two make it look mid-engined. Either a crap artist or a company that doesn't know.

700kg? For a Caterfield? That's nudging Elsie territory, and if they're expecting it to be 'more hardcore, need a helmet', then will people want all that weight?!? If someone wants an impractical track-car, they'll go for an Atom or a Caterham - more weight will just reduce corner speeds and increase consumables costs!!!

The pricing is interesting - €35k will translate (if they do a rhd version) to £30k or so. In other words, Exige/CSR territory...

I'm wondering if they'll release two versions - a clubsport track-spec stripped out one, and a roadsport 'luxury' one with a removable hood and, maybe even, carpets!!!

oagent

1,287 posts

216 months

Wednesday 15th March 2006
quotequote all
Did anyone else see a few shots of a VW badged, Morgan like, 3 wheeler in Nuts or was it Zoo last week? That would have far more potential than this.

This one with off road tyres looks to me a bit like a modern beach buggy. Is this VAG going back to their aircooled history of slightly quirky silly cars. Lets have a new surf bus with an audi badge too please.. Hold on.. they have already done that and put a VW touareg badge on that.

Bada Bing!

882 posts

200 months

Wednesday 15th March 2006
quotequote all
The words "lightweight" and "Audi" haven't gone together for some time. I'll believe it when I see it...

>> Edited by Bada Bing! on Wednesday 15th March 15:42

dinkel

26,041 posts

231 months

Wednesday 15th March 2006
quotequote all
oagent said:
Did anyone else see a few shots of a VW badged, Morgan like, 3 wheeler . . .


dinkel said:
GX3 anyone?


runnersp

1,061 posts

193 months

Wednesday 15th March 2006
quotequote all
I can't see this car taking off. Sure in the UK there's a big market for trackday specials and the like, but IMO mainland Europe doesn't seem to share the fascination. As a marketing device it makes sense, linking up to KTM which is perceived to be next big thing in European motorcycling and so on. But production? That might be a tad much. And just like the VW GX3 it just doesn't work for me.

Sanderrr

4 posts

202 months

Wednesday 15th March 2006
quotequote all
Well, Audi already supports seven-alike roadster builder Donkervoort from the netherlands(www.donkervoort.nl ) so maybe Audi got the inspiration from them?

excellent car btw; once drove their 210hp demo car: a real blast!

>> Edited by Sanderrr on Wednesday 15th March 17:14

>> Edited by Sanderrr on Wednesday 15th March 17:14

NDT

1,720 posts

236 months

Wednesday 15th March 2006
quotequote all
I wouldn't attach any credibility to those sketches.
The stylist has heard that Audi and KTM are working together, and done his own thing, based on a 340R.

NDT

1,720 posts

236 months

Wednesday 15th March 2006
quotequote all
oagent said:
Lets have a new surf bus with an audi badge too please.. Hold on.. they have already done that and put a VW touareg badge on that.


No, it was the Microbus concept.
IIRC it's forecast for production in 2008.

GTRene

12,758 posts

197 months

Wednesday 15th March 2006
quotequote all
in 1995 BMW brought this "just 4-2" conceptcar...very lightweight


Nice kanon like exhausts too

1995 BMW Just 4/2
Year 1995
Make BMW
Model Just 4/2
Engine Location Rear
Drive Type AWD
Weight 1212 lbs | 549.8 kg

Engine
Engine Configuration I
Cylinders 4
Aspiration/Induction Normal
Displacement 1.10 L | 67.1 cu in. | 1099.8 cc.
Valves 16 valves.
4 valves per cylinder.

For that time 1995 very nice I think, and it had a bike-engine!


GTRene

>> Edited by GTRene on Wednesday 15th March 20:22

summit7

470 posts

202 months

Wednesday 15th March 2006
quotequote all
I get a little peeved at all these car manufacturers claiming a light weight 7 inspired car. A target weight of 700kgs is a joke, thats not 7 inspired thats bloated by comparison and not understanding about steering/cornering compared to performance. For me the only car that really has taken the original 7 concept from Chapman and put it into the modern world is Radical. They rule the tracks just like the 7 did when launched. By the way you want a real focussed light weight car look at the Xanthos 23 - stunning if only I had the money I'd be in heaven every day of the week and its lighter in race trim than an R500 - no wonder the original pissed on everything else with just a little Climax engine in it (and a brilliant driver). Rant over now I'll get me coat, by the way as much chance of Audi doing this as me having a night with Melanie Sykes. - Summit7