Audi’s long-running five-cylinder engine will continue serving propulsion duties for approximately 10 more years despite tightening emissions regulations and the global automotive trend towards electrification, Which Car reports. Most recently found behind within the Audi TT RS and the RS3 Sportback, the 2.5 litre inline five-cylinder turbocharged petrol engine has roots which date back to the original Audi Quattro.

Codenamed DNWA, the turbo five-pot will continue to be part of the German automaker’s future plans, particularly within its sporting division, said head of Audi Sport Oliver Hoffman.

“It is more difficult (to keep the engine in production), but it’s not just a question of how difficult it is. For EU7 (emissions regulations) we have concepts for all our engines, but it is just a matter of how much money I have to spend to reach the targets,” he said.

The engine underwent a 26 kg weight saving in its latest iteration which moved to an alloy block construction, along with a 33 hp output hike in RS3 guise compared to its predecessor. In its latest form, the powerplant produces 400 hp and 480 Nm of torque, transmitted to all four wheels via a seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox in both the TT RS and the RS3.

The long-serving engine has also been found in other models further afield within the larger Volkswagen Group, albeit in testing stages for models yet to be released such as the on-again, off-again Golf R420.

Though there hasn’t exactly been a call to discontinue the five-pot, the engine will have to earn its place in the production line-up, said Audi Sport product planner Annette Möllhoff.

“For us, the five cylinder is so strongly combined with the heritage of Audi. It’s our number one USP in those models, and every time we launch a new model with the five-cylinder, we get the feedback that ‘we are so happy you stick to that engine and don’t downgrade to the four-cylinder,” Möllhoff notes.

The firm is working to expand the engine’s usage into further models by ensuring that it meets current and future regulations, said Audi Sport technical manager Sebastian Grossert. “It’s always not so easy to fulfil the new laws, but we have been working on it for a year now,” he said. “We are going for it and we’re hoping we can fulfil all the laws and offer it for future compact models,” he said.

One of the strategies likely to be used is electrification – Audi is rolling out 12V and 48V mild-hybrid systems for models such as the facelifted A4, which is claimed to offer fuel savings of up to 0.7 litres per 100 km, depending on engine, the report added.