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The history of the Audi Quattro all-wheel drive

Let’s retrace, in this dedicated article, the history of the Audi Quattro all-wheel drive. Let’s find out all the details together

In the history of the automobile, Audi’s quattro all-wheel drive certainly deserves a special mention. Born between 1976 and 1977the traction Audi Quattro helped the German automaker to carve out a major role among global automakers. It can also be said that it is the hallmark of Audi, so much so that it continues to help the German company present innovations and solutions suitable for all kinds of needs. In the following paragraphs, we will try to better understand what is meant by Audi and four-wheel drive underline what are its recognized strengths.

Audi Quattro all-wheel drive: a bit of history

As mentioned, the history of the Audi quattro drive dates back to the period between 1976 and 1977, to be precise during tests carried out on a Volkswagen military vehicle. Since then, the Audi Quattro drive has come a long way, finding space on dozens of successful models. It is, therefore, a successful traction system, which has been able to beat the competition and convince the public and critics. Over the years, then, the Audi Quattro drive has evolved and adapted, without ever going out of style.

The name chosen, Audi all-wheel drive quattro, dates back to the 1980s, when it won an internal competition against other terms such as “kadro”. Even today, the all-wheel drive from Audi is as present as ever, think, for example, of the thermal and electric models offered by the German company with its seven variants! The date of the grand debut, however, was 1980, when the Audi engineers had the intuition to apply that traction system on one of their sedans.

Q4 Audi quattro: intelligent drive becomes electric

The best way to test the four-wheel drive on the road is to request the long-term rental Audi Q4. In this way it will be possible to get behind the wheel and test its advantages, without having to face purchase constraints of any kind and without having to think about maintenance and insurance. The example of the Audi Q4 e-tron is made precisely because it is a car that can count on a modern version of the intelligent electric Quattro all-wheel drive.

The version 50 e-tron Quattro, represents the first to be equipped with the famous intelligent electric all-wheel drive. With the Q4 Audi quattro e-tron 50, which is the most powerful, you can enjoy all the advantages of four-wheel drive, with two electric motors, with a combined power of 299 hp, which move the front and rear wheels.

How does Audi Quattro drive work?

But how exactly does this groundbreaking technology that has helped position Audi at the top of the innovation chart work? This permanent four-wheel drive system uses a self-locking central differential and, through this system, can boast of a traction distribution with ratio 40:60where the 40% of the propulsion force comes from the front axle, and 60% from the rear.

Choosing Quattro Audi therefore means being able to count on better traction under acceleration and excellent road holding. Furthermore, if the wheels of one axle were to lose grip, the torque would be shifted towards the other axle and distributed automatically by the central differential. As you can see, we speak of an advanced system which manages to significantly improve travel safety, without renouncing to give the driver a feeling of stability and safety.

Audi Quattro drive and Ultra technology

For those wishing to drive with the highest level of efficiency, there is the possibility of using the Audi Quattro drive with ultra technology. In this way, excellent performance is combined with the maximum efficiency of a system with two clutches, with the respective rear parts arranged so that they can be decoupled. The dialogue between the two clutches it also allows you to have all the advantages of front-wheel drive when needed, for example on straight motorway stretches, but without giving up all the power typical of all-wheel drive.

But how does all this happen? The merit is of the presence of some sensors that serve to monitor the dynamics, driving behavior and even road conditions in real time. Through this technology, in fact, the all-wheel drive is activated automatically for the maximum comfort of the driver. Thanks to this system you can make your driving aboard an Audi car efficient and safe, but that’s not all.

With the Audi Quattro driveIn fact, there is also the possibility of enriching the driving experience with an optional, the sport differential, which solves the problem associated with the natural tendency of vehicles to understeer at every turn and corner entry. In essence, it is a differential positioned on the rear axle and equipped with different overlapping stages on the left and right, each equipped with a multiple-disc clutch to variably distribute the drive torque on the individual tyres.

Audi Quattro drive with multi-plate clutch

If all-wheel drive with super technology aims to always obtain maximum efficiency with the cars of the German company, we also have the specific Audi Quattro traction for front, but transversal, placement engines. We are talking about the models of the German company equipped with an engine, in which the crankshaft is perpendicular to the direction of travel of the car.

These Audi models use the permanent all-wheel variant with an electro-hydraulic multi-plate clutch, positioned precisely at the end of the drive shaft. In addition, there is also a wet plate pack inside the clutch which is actuated by an electro-hydraulic pump. Whenever you need intervention from the Audi Quattro drive, the discs are under pressure which, by generating friction, makes the main drive shaft communicate with the secondary one which is connected to the rear differential.

Electric Quattro drive and torque vectoring

Finally, in some models such as Audi e-tron, the era of electric four-wheel drive was also inaugurated, based on the presence of a zero-emission engine on each axle. In the 2020, the German company has also brought the so-called electric torque vectoring to the debut with the Audi e-tron S and Audi e-tron S Sportback. In this case, the cars are equipped with as many as three electric motors and electric torque vectoring distributes the torque between the rear wheels in fractions of a second. Each rear propeller is able to transmit thrust to the nearest wheel, using a system of gears and thus rendering the mechanical differential useless.

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