5 million, quattro coupe

Audi introduced the world to the Audi Quattro, a four-wheel-drive coupe that would go on to change rally racing forever, at the Geneva Motor Show in 1980. Nearly 33 years since the first Quattro coupe graced auto show goers in Switzerland, Audi has produced its five millionth vehicle equipped with its innovative all-wheel-drive system.

Available on all Audi models sold in North America, Quattro helps cars like the 430-horsepower R8 sports car and 560-horsepower RS7 sports sedan maintain traction at sticky track venues, while also working as a safety feature to keep Audi products from venturing off-road in low traction scenarios.

In fact, just shy of half of all Audi’s sold worldwide are ordered with Quattro and Audi reports that consumers in Canada, the U.S., Russia and the Middle East are some of the top selling markets for Quattro equipped Audi’s.

Of course, Audi’s Quattro system has come a long way since it’s inception. Along the way Audi has done away with the original system’s manual center differential and replaced it with a Torsen unit. The switch to a Torsen unit allowed for variable torque distribution between the front and rear axles without any need for the driver to interact with the system. As such, cars like the Audi RS5 can distribute as much as 85 percent of engine torque to the front axle and 70 percent to the rear depending on the conditions the system encounters.

Audi’s Quattro system has shown up in Audi’s with both longitudinal and transverse mounted engines, as well as most recently in Audi’s R18 e-tron Le Mans racecar. While many buyers option their Audi’s with Quattro for safety reasons, cars such as the Audi R18 e-tron serve as a reminder of the system’s motor racing roots and performance potential

Due to the safety-conscious consumers who have made the system so popular, the five-millionth Audi to roll off the assembly line with Quattro was not an RS5 or TT RS, but the not-sold-in-North America Audi A6 Allroad, a crossover based on the Audi A6 wagon. While Quattro has achieved many great feats in the world of racing, no doubt it’s greatest feat of all has been its ability to safely bring drivers and passengers to their destinations for over 30 years.

Since Audi’s inception of Quattro, other luxury automakers have adopted competitive all-wheel-drive systems. In fact, almost every major luxury automaker offers all-wheel-drive on their cars today, from BMW to Mercedes-Benz to Lexus. No doubt, Quattro revolutionized the world of racing, safety and premium automobiles.

To learn more about Quattro stop by ­­­Royal Oak Audi today.

Image credit: Audi