|May 19, 2011
A new concept for future mobility
Source: Audi of America
“Clean, safe, connected”: that is the slogan of the 11th Michelin Challenge Bibendum, to be held in Berlin from May 18 to 22. Audi satisfies these requirements concerning the mobility of the future via its “Audi balanced mobility” project, its modern assistance systems and its “Audi connect” initiative. The brand with the four rings will participate in Michelin Challenge Bibendum’s rally races and test drives by way of five different vehicles with alternative drivetrains.
Michelin Challenge Bibendum, one of the world’s largest forums for sustainable mobility, will be held at Tempelhof (Berlin’s one-time airport) from May 18 to 22. The field comprises some 120 vehicles with alternative and resource-efficient drive concepts, including five pioneering technology studies and production models by Audi.
A highlight of this large-scale event will be the rally races on Wednesday, May 18. Performance tests and handling tests will take place beforehand at the ADAC Road Safety Center in Linthe (southwest of Berlin) on Tuesday, May 17. The rally itself will span 125 kilometers (78 miles) and end near Potsdam. Audi will enter the A3 Sportback e-tron in this competition.
The InterCity Rally, a different event on May 18, will cover 300 meandering kilometers (186 miles) in the German state of Brandenburg. This is a long-distance competition for passenger vehicles and also includes safety tests. Four Audi vehicles will participate: the A3 TCNG powered by natural gas, the Q5 HFC with a fuel-cell power system, the Q5 hybrid quattro and the Audi A8, which features the new 3.0 TDI generating 150 kW (204 hp).
This highly efficient luxury sedan will take part in a third competition: the Eco Driving Challenge, which the ADAC will stage on Sunday, May 22 to wrap up the event. Entrants will seek to complete the course spanning 300 kilometers (186 miles) as quickly as possible – while consuming as little fuel as possible.
The rally vehicles will also participate on the Tempelhof grounds in the Ride & Drive event, an opportunity to test drive for specialists, journalists and even some members of the general public. At its very own trade-show stand, Audi will publicize its comprehensive strategy for future mobility.
The company’s overall goal in this context is referred to as Audi balanced mobility: mobility in accord with the environment and society. A core aspect of this mission is the Audi e-gas project. The brand is establishing a portfolio of sustainable sources of energy – starting with wind power. This portfolio will be rounded out by electricity, hydrogen and methane. Tomorrow’s electric, fuel-cell and methane vehicles will thus be made mobile and clean. The dual electricity/gas principle can aid the energy-supply industry in solving the problem of how to store electricity generated via renewable energy.
Under the slogan Audi connect, the brand is connecting its vehicles with the outside world: with nearby infrastructure, the driver and the Internet. This networking is based on the speedy exchange of data via UMTS or, in the future, LTE. It offers countless opportunities for making driving even more convenient and comfortable while structuring traffic flows which are more efficient as well as safer and smoother.
The brand with the four rings is ahead of the competition in this field. A Bluetooth online car phone, which integrates a UMTS module and a WLAN hotspot, is available for several Audi models. And Audi’s online traffic information system already provides up-to-the-minute traffic data more quickly and more precisely than conventional information via radio. Additional pioneering online services will soon follow.
The integrative approach to the future pursued by Audi goes far beyond the scope of automotive engineering. The company created the Audi Urban Future Initiative this year to develop new modes of individual mobility for the major cities of this world. Under this umbrella, Audi convenes its own experts as well as architects, city planners and scientists to exchange ideas – a novel and remarkable type of networking.
Safety, the third catchword at Michelin Challenge Bibendum, is also a top priority at Audi. The brand’s cutting-edge driver assistance systems help make driving more assured and practical. These systems simplify many tasks for the driver, warn him of potentially dangerous situations and, if necessary, intervene to lend a virtual helping hand. Audi is working at top speed to advance safety innovations, as well.
Advancements regarding driver assistance systems and the building blocks which constitute Audi connect are blazing a trail toward comprehensively networked automobiles.