Normal aspiration seems to be on its way out in the mass-production sports sedan world, as seen in 2009 Audi S5 which swaps a 4.2 V8 for a 3.0 supercharged V6.
Naturally aspirated V8 power seems to be getting the shaft from more and more German powerhouses these days as automakers begin to grapple with high fuel prices and CO2 emissions. Audi is now said to be going the same route, starting with its S5 which currently enjoys a 4.2-litre V8 kicking out 260 kW (354 bhp) and peak torque of 440Nm.
However, S5 has not exactly set the scene on fire, not because it's a bad car, far from it. It's just a bit heavier than what it should be and takes in more fuel than rivals. So the new 3.0-litre supercharged V6 engine has been ordered to solve some of these issues. Lighter and charged, the powerplant is already in use in the S4 so next year S5 gets it as well. Inside Line was peculiarly told it will push out 245kW (329hp) which is clearly less than the 4.2 V8 numbers, however, a smaller engine with a force-feeder could produce better performance and fuel consumption figures under similar conditions.
Meanwhile, it is expected that S6 will ditch its normally aspirated V10 for a 4.2-litre biturbo, again, going with current rival trends. S8 will get the same treatment but higher power output, while the R8 goes RS6 way by taking a V10 biturbo for 2009. An R6 is rumoured as being developed as well, slotting nicely between the smaller R4 and R8. An Audi engineer has clearly stated his company is going after Porsche. Hopefully Porsche lets it.