Preparations for Audi's return to the DTM are well under way after works driver Frank Biela completed a successful roll out with the new A4 DTM car just before Christmas.

After three months of intensive development work, the new car will now undergo extensive testing at a number of European Tracks to get it ready in time for its debut at Hockenheim on 18 April.

Head of Audi Sport, Dr Wolfgang Ullrich, is pleased that the team is sticking to the tight schedule they set themselves when they started the project.

"It was our goal to have the new A4 DTM up and running before the New Year, to be able to test extensively before the start of the season", he said. "That our team managed to keep the extremely tight schedule for roll-out, speaks volumes for Audi Sport and our partners. This gives us an advantage as far as time is concerned when compared to our competitors."

The A4 DTM car is the first that conforms to new regulations that stipulates the use of four door saloons in the championship so the A4 is an all new car for the new season.

"The A4 DTM is a completely new development, only the uprights and the prescribed DTM standard components originate from the Abt-Audi TT-R," said Wolfgang Appel, Director of Vehicle Engineering at Audi Sport. "The DTM regulations are very restrictive. Nevertheless, we were able to incorporate several things that made the Audi R8 so successful in the sport prototypes over the last few years."

Biela, who drove an A4 in the BTCC in the 1990's, and has also driven for Audi at Le Mans, was impressed by the new car.

"The seating position is excellent, as is the field of vision", he said. "The A4 looks absolutely fantastic and felt good from the word go. I didn't expect anything different: I've been lucky enough, during the 13 years in which I have driven now for Audi, to complete a fair amount of roll-outs. It was business as usual: You sit in and everything works as it should, which is not always the case in motorsport and shows just how professionally Audi works. Now I can hardly wait for the first proper test."

 

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