In the late 80s, the Audi strategists were looking for a new application for quattro technology. They found it in North America, in the TransAm series for touring cars. The first test laps were completed in late 1987. On April 16, 1988, Audi entered two cars piloted by Hans-Joachim Stuck and American driver Hurley Haywood in the race over the Long Beach city circuit, where they squared off against a pack of American touring cars with their large-displacement, naturally aspirated V8 engines producing more than 680 hp. Audi had some entirely new impressions in store for the spectators. The 200 quattro TransAm came out of the corners its engine screaming, underscored by the hissing and whistling of the wastegate valve. Flames darted out of the tailpipes when shifting gears. The Audi more than made up for its lack of horsepower with agility and better traction, and it drove rings around the rear-wheel drive cars of the competition in the rain. Haywood recorded the first victory in just the second race in Dallas, and at the end of the season Audi had won 8 of 13 races and the manufacturer’s championship. Besides Stuck, the new champion Haywood and Walter Röhrl each recorded two victories.
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