Audi’s 420-Horsepower Turbo 4-Cylinder Is Dead

Blame the existing turbocharged inline-five. And maybe Dieselgate.

audi tt quattro sport concept the drive ea888 four cylinder
Audi

The sorrow brought about by Volkswagen's Dieselgate scandal may have stripped the automotive world of another amazing piece of engineering. Audi's 400-plus-horsepower 2.0-liter four-cylinder motor will reportedly never live under the hood of a production car.

At the media launch for the upcoming TT RS, Audi Quattro engineering head Stephen Reil said Volkswagen would not be going forward with the immensely-powerful 2.0-liter four-cylinder motor seen in the 2014 TT Quattro Sport concept (pictured above) and the Golf R400 concept, Autoblog reports.

"The 400-horsepower EA888 engine is dead," Reil said, referring to the four-pot by its internal code name.

The EA888 engine was brought to life by Friedrich Eichler, the man who built and designed AMG's 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder found in the likes of the CLA45. When the 420-horsepower Quattro Sport concept was revealed, the company claimed that with the EA888 motor, the car would be capable of doing zero to 62 miles-per-hour in a spritely 3.7 seconds—the same as today's production TT RS, which uses Audi's turbo 2.5-liter five-cylinder engine.

While the VW Group's post-Dieselgate shift towards electric vehicles and financial realignment may have played a role in the death of the EA888, it's also possible that engineering on the engine was halted because the existing five-cylinder, which is roughly as capable, is believed to be a better value than the freshly-engineered four-cylinder.

"If we go for the four, to have that specific power output from a 2.0-liter, the engine is unbelievably expensive and then we still have only a four-cylinder engine," Reil said. Autoblog notes that the EA888 required newly engineered parts like an ultra-high-strength crankshaft, a special heavy-duty cast-alloy crankcase, and uniquely-engineered aluminum pistons with integrated cooling channels.

Still, we would have loved to have it find its way to the streets. Rest in peace, little EA888.