Audi Celebrates 25 Years of TDI Technology

By Christian Stampfer on 13 August 2014
  • Share

P1030102INGOLSTADT – In 1989, at the Frankfurt Internationale Automobil Ausstellung in Frankfurt, Audi unveiled the brand’s first diesel-powered passenger car.

The Audi 100 was equipped with a 2.5-liter inline-five cylinder turbodiesel engine – a TDI in Audi/VW parlance –  with direct fuel injection and a fully electronic engine management. TDI stands for Turbo Diesel Injection and the 100 was the first within the Volkswagen family to use the TDI label.

The Audi 100 produced 120 horsepower with a maximum torque of 265 pound-feet.  The 100’s engine is still being produced, albeit for a difference purpose, in this case for Volkswagen Marine applications.

Twenty-five years later, the Ingolstadt-based car manufacturer celebrates its TDI anniversary with the next big step in the company’s diesel technology. Ulrich Hackenberg, member of the board of management of Audi AG for technical development, presented the marque’s first ever high-performance RS model with a diesel engine.

The Audi RS5 TDI concept features a 3.0-liter V6 TDI biturbo engine, which is engineered with an additional electric-powered turbocharger. The concept car is capable of developing 385 horsepower and offers lucky drivers an enormous 553 pound-feet of torque.

Today Audi offers a wide range of diesel-powered automobiles and has since sold more than 7.5 million cars with a TDI engine. Over two-thirds of customers choose diesel when ordering a new Audi.

Since the start of its TDI clean diesel campaign in 2009 in the United States, sales of TDI models in that market increased rapidly. In 2013, Audi of America added several diesel variants of the Audi A6, A7, and Q5, which helped the brand to increase diesel sales up to 40% compared to 2012.

With the arrival of the A3 Sedan and A3 Sportback in 2015, Audi will offer a complete range of diesels. Naturally, both new A3 models will be available with a four-cylinder 2.0-liter TDI engine.

(Photo: Accura Media Group)