Exclusive sunset shots show some of the contributors to record demand for the Vorsprung durch Technik brand in a new light
As the UK’s shortest day looms on December 21, Audi has fittingly plunged some of the luminaries from its range into near-darkness to create a unique set of photographs. The four excerpts from the now 49 model-strong Audi line-up are shown in a new light with the help of a photographic technique known as ‘light painting’, in which exposures are made by moving a hand-held light source or camera to selectively illuminate parts of the car or to create stunning light trails around it.
Audi models are particularly well equipped for the darkest weeks of the year as they are either fitted as standard, or available with the option of, high intensity xenon gas discharge headlamps or new, even more penetrating LED headlights, depending on the model chosen. Both light types are also flanked by signature LED daytime running lamps which further enhance safety.
To help drivers contend with the potentially hazardous road conditions which often accompany shorter days, Audi also offers over 140 model options equipped with quattro all-wheel-drive for added protection against the elements.
The shortest day, with just under eight hours of daylight, brings sunrise at 8.04 AM and sunset at 3.53 PM (based on London timings) making December one of the most challenging months for UK drivers.
The much-loved Audi RS range is represented in the fast fading light photo opportunity by the supremely powerful RS 5 Cabriolet, which can provide year-round top-down thrills courtesy of its potent 4.2-litre, 450PS V8 harnessed by quattro all-wheel drive. Capable of 0-62mph in 4.9 seconds, and an electronically limited 155 mph top speed which can be raised on request to 174mph, the most extreme Audi soft-top this side of the R8 Spyder is priced from £68,985 OTR.
All-LED S6 – The formidable Audi S6 Saloon, equipped in this case with the option of the extraordinarily crisp and clear all-LED light set-up also takes centre stage in the sunset snapshot. The advanced light units include high-beam assist, which automatically dips the beam when another vehicle approaches or ambient lighting is detected by the on-board camera.
At the business end of the S6, a twin-turbo-charged V8 develops 420 PS and 550Nm, enabling it to hit 62mph in 4.6 seconds and to power on to an electronically governed 155mph top speed. Despite the ample power reserves, up to 29.4mpg is achievable thanks in part to Cylinder-on-Demand technology, which shuts down four of the engine’s eight cylinders under partial load to maximise efficiency. Prices start from £54,505 OTR for the Saloon and £56,725 OTR for the Avant.
Another highlight is the 333 PS S5 Coupé, which with its supercharged 3.0-litre V6 engine and advanced crown gear differential-based quattro all-wheel-drive system is capable of sprinting to 62mph in 4.9 seconds and delivering incisive yet impressively controlled handling, while also returning up to 34.9 mpg. The S5 is available in five-door Sportback, Coupé and Cabriolet forms priced from £42,595 OTR, and Coupé and Sportback versions can be upgraded to S5 Black Edition specification which adds an attractive black styling package, privacy glass and a 14-speaker Bang & Olufsen surround sound system as standard.
The spotlight also lands on the multi award-winning Audi A3 range, represented here by the three-door model. Five-door Sportback and four-door Saloon variants are also now available, and very soon a sleek new Cabriolet option will join the line-up. Among the host of intrinsically efficient engines powering this all-new, appreciably lighter and considerably more technologically advanced range are the new 184 PS 2.0 TDI and the efficiency-focussed 1.4 TFSI with Cylinder-on-Demand, which can achieve up to 60.1 mpg corresponding to CO2 emissions of just 109g/km.
First deliveries of the new Cabriolet are anticipated to begin in April next year with prices starting from £25,790 OTR for the entry level 1.4 TFSI SE. In the meantime, A3 prices range from 18,280 OTR to £29,710 OTR.