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It’s back! Audi Quattro Sport Concept gets hybridized, 700 (!) hp

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Yep, you read that right; the awesome modernized version of that all-time classic, the Audi Quattro has reappeared.

When the original concept appeared at the 2010 Paris Motor Show, it got a lot of attention; was it four-wheel drive only? Did it share the TT RS’ five-cylinder motor (the original Ur-Quattro was powered by a five-banger, after all)? Will they make one?

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Should I be excited?

The years wore on, however, and as sales of the A, S and RS5 (whose platform the Quattro shares) continued to soar, odds of any form of Quattro appearing became slim. Then, the R8 e-tron got nixed and angst surrounding whether or not Audi would take a chance on something so new grew even more.

Well, folks, it appears that Audi is trying to assuage both sets of fears at the 2013 Frankfurt motor show, as the latest version of the Quattro features a plug-in hybrid powertrain and enough power—a claimed 700 hp—to move mountains. Or a couple of occupants, very quickly.

Is it fast? What’s it got underneath?

Helping achieve that somewhat startling figure is a mix of proper old-school combustion—a 4-litre twin-turbo TFSI V8 good for 560 hp—and a new-school electrification, with a 110 kilowatt disc-shaped electric motor making a peak output of 295 lb.-ft. of torque.

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Those 700 horses don’t have all that much to move, either, thanks to high-strength steels being used for the passenger compartment, the doors and fenders being crafted from aluminum and the roof, hood and rear hatch being finished in carbon-fibre reinforced plastic (CFRP). The result? An 1,850 kilogram curb weight. For comparison’s sake, know that the Tesla Model S weighs over 2,000 kilos and has, at most, 416 hp to haul it around. So yes, the Quattro Concept—if it ran—would be very, very, fast. As in claimed 3.7 seconds 0-60 mph fast.

Are they going to build it?

Well, it may be just a show car at this juncture but the fact that Audi is willing to share facts about its suspension, chassis, body construction and powertrain points to it maybe being closer to production than it has been previously.

At the very least, expect to see some tech being debuted here making it to Audi performance models going forward.

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