Torque Splitter rear end allows 100 percent of power to go to one rear wheel
Will come with drift mode on new Audi RS 3
Audi isn’t quite ready to show off the new RS 3 just yet, but they are ready to show off one of its coolest features. The all-new RS Torque Splitter debuting in the Audi RS3 is a rear differential that can send power to either rear wheel, improving turn in and reducing understeer.
“A quantum leap for agile driving” is what Audi’s development driver called the new rear axle. It works by putting two multi-plate electronically controlled clutch packs into the rear diff. One for each side’s output shaft.
This lets Audi send 100 percent of rear wheel torque to just one of the two wheels, or to vary it in whatever ratio the onboard computer thinks will deliver the best result for agility and stability. Each clutch pack has its own control unit that uses wheel speed sensors as well as longitudinal and lateral acceleration, pedal position, yaw angle, and even the drive mode. All of those inputs come into play as it decides how to apportion rear-wheel power.
Adding more power to the outside wheel helps reduce understeer, makes the car better follow the steering angle, and helps the new RS 3 to accelerate harder out of corners. If you’ve thrown it in too aggressively, the torque splitter adds power to the inside rear, helping you to better control the oversteer.
There are five drive mode curves, each affecting how the Torque Splitter is used. Comfort sends power primarily to the front axle. Auto works to keep the car balanced, avoiding oversteer and understeer equally. Dynamic is meant to send as much power to the rear as possible for increased agility. RS Performance mode is designed for the race track and tuned for Pirelli P Zero Trofeo R tires, while RS Torque Rear is the drift mode. Able to send all of the engine’s power to just the outside rear wheels, letting the new RS 3 get as sideways as you’d like.
We’re still waiting for the rest of the Audi RS 3 that torque splitter is attached to, but at least we know it will keep the inline-five that is such a big part of the car’s experience.