Audi’s 420-Horsepower Turbo 4-Cylinder Is Dead
Blame the existing turbocharged inline-five. And maybe Dieselgate.
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.