Audi has designed this new system to improve aerodynamics on SUVs by eliminating “flow separation,” a disturbance in airflow that increases drag which usually takes place about half way down the rear window. To fight this, the movable spoiler will lower at speeds over 80 km/h (49 mph) to the right height to combat this added drag.
This allows the vehicle to keep its styling when traveling at low speeds, when the aerodynamic forces on the vehicle are negligible, and combat added drag once speed picks up.
While active spoilers aren’t new technology, this Audi design is a new implementation of the idea, using two tracks on either side of the rear window to help the spoiler move up and down. Also, unlike other systems, which deploy a spoiler at high speeds for added downforce, this system is meant to improve aerodynamics and reduce drag.
Like always, it’s worth mentioning that this is only a Patent, so we will have to wait and see if it makes it to production.
Article Originally Published in autoguide.com