Reinke: North America the “Strongest Market” for Audi GT4

Photo: Audi

Head of Audi Sport customer racing Chris Reinke predicts North America will be the “strongest market” for the new Audi R8 LMS GT4, which could still make a race appearance in October’s California 8 Hours prior to a full customer rollout.

Development of the mid-engined sports car has continued since its competition debut in the Nürburgring 24, with initial deliveries set to begin in December ahead of the 2018 season.

Reinke said they’ve received a “tremendous” amount of initial interest in the car, and went as far to say the North American market will likely be its most successful, in what will mark a shift in previous trends.

“For GT3, we say the core market is Europe, now spreading out to Asia quite a bit, through the new GT series over there,” Reinke told Sportscar365.

“For sure, I think GT4, especially from the club racing and track day cliental, the majority will be in the U.S. It will be our strongest market out of Europe, Asia and U.S.”

With the car not yet on sale, Reinke said they don’t have a firm projection on the number of cars that will be produced for next year but indicated that it would likely be fewer than the run of 100 Audi RS3 LMS TCR cars built over a seven-month period.

An intensive development program for the GT4-spec car has continued, including a four-day test at Nogaro last month, where Reinke said they made further gains with the overall package.

“The base technology is sorted and the concept is confirmed.” he said. “At the moment it’s to put the mileage on to prove and to fine-tune the ASR, ABS and also the electronics systems.”

Reinke said additional end-of-season VLN rounds are possible, along with the inaugural Intercontinental GT Challenge round at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca on Oct. 13-15, which could be used as a launch event for the North American market.

“It is an option,” Reinke said. “We’ll have the car on display at Petit Le Mans for display. So we’ll have a car in the States at that time.

“We’ll consider it but once again, we have to sort where we put our resources at the moment.

“Priority one will be to have customer cars. If we have all the technical [details] released in time and the production is on the way, we might want to spoil ourselves with an entry at Laguna Seca.”

15 Comments

  1. jason

    August 16, 2017 at 8:47 am

    Are these GT4 cars staring to look and act like GT3 cars but with a smaller rear wing?

    • AF

      August 16, 2017 at 9:29 am

      Yep. Watch the prices of things shoot up just like GT3 too when the Audi and Mercedes cars hit the proverbial shelves.

      • NaBUru38

        August 17, 2017 at 2:51 pm

        Audi and Mercedes are hardly the most expensive GT4 cars.

    • Jonathan

      August 16, 2017 at 9:49 am

      The current crop of GT4 cars today is identical to what GT3 was 10 years ago.

      As AF said, that before Audi and Mercedes arrived and the class morphed beyond its origins as seen today.

  2. Dan

    August 16, 2017 at 9:39 am

    GT4 is becoming the new GT3, let’s just hope it’s better controlled than GT3. Not sure it’s the best thing that flagship models such as the R8 and AMG GT are allowed in. The Mustang, Camaro, Cayman, base Aston and KTM make sense as GT4 cars but these cars are a bit out there.

    • Slicks in the wet

      August 16, 2017 at 11:20 am

      I’m SURE it’s not a good idea.

      What provenance is there to race a mustang vs even a mclaren? No cross market there.

      It’s like a GTi being in GTE/GTLM. No reason a GTi should race against a 488.

      So..as a racer/team in a GT4 class..why would I choose an comparatively lame camaro instead of an r8..that won’t attract sponsors or look cool in the results list.

      • Name

        August 16, 2017 at 2:07 pm

        Because you could probably buy two Camaros, Mustangs, or even Caymans for the price of one of these.

  3. daedalus

    August 16, 2017 at 9:47 am

    I must admit I never really paid much attention to GT4 considering it to be a “made for ams only” class. However these past few years gt3 has got more boring with the increased aero causing reduced overtaking.

    GT4 on the other hand is like the gt3 racing of old. These cars can follow, overtake,repass etc. The races are more fun to watch even if they could do with more power. This together with lower costs could explain why some national series like British GT are seeing massive growth in GT4.

  4. Larry

    August 16, 2017 at 9:54 am

    Geez, supercars in GT4.

    As mentioned, some car manufacturers have different models for GT4 like the Cayman, Mustang, etc, but this is just an adaptation of a GT3 car in the same manner as some others, like Mercedes, are doing. Even McLaren has a different model for GT4.

    As for the KTM X-Bow, it’s a kit car. You can’t import it to the US with an engine, you have to supply your own, and the street version does not have a roof.

    It’s not a production car.

    • Name

      August 16, 2017 at 2:11 pm

      It’s not a kit car, it’s a track day car. In a class that’s for small sports cars AND track day cars. The Xbow fits the class perfectly, unlike Audi and AMG $200k flagship supercars.

      • Larry

        August 16, 2017 at 10:35 pm

        When you have to finish assembly yourself, it IS a kit car.

        GTS is supposed to be for production cars not “track day cars”.

      • Chris

        August 17, 2017 at 4:19 am

        But when we look at GT4, taking the AMG and R8 out, you still have things like the Aston Martin Vantage which isnt exactly cheap. In the British series we have seen the Ginetta G55 as the alternative

  5. guest

    August 16, 2017 at 11:51 am

    Should have been the Audi TT-RS as the GT4 car. This class is out of hand.

    • Larry

      August 16, 2017 at 10:36 pm

      This right here. TT would be a better fit.

  6. Chris

    August 17, 2017 at 4:16 am

    I disagree, I think the GT4 concept is great. In British GT we have the GT3 and GT4 cars running together and you can see the differences. Aero is one thing and also the engine is not as powerful but here is also things such as the hub, the car has to have the same amount of wheel nuts as the road going version.
    British GT has proved that they can co-exist on the same grid.

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