MLS

Audi will donate $1,000 for every goal scored during the MLS is Back Tournament

Audi Field is home to DC United. Audi has its U.S. headquarters near the stadium.

Photo courtesy of Audi AG

Sports are back! The PBR and NASCAR were among the first. Heck, even MLB finally got its act together. Now, MLS is ready to kick off their season with a little help from Audi.

During the MLS is Back Tournament, the way the league is opening their abbreviated season this year, Audi will donate $1,000 to MLS Academies for every goal scored. During the finale, the company is committing to $5,000 per goal. Additionally, Audi will contribute $10,000 to the Academy represented by the MLS is Back Tournament Golden Boot winner (the tournament's leading goal scorer).

Audi MLS 25 years Earlier this year, the MLS Academies program added 64 teams. Photo courtesy of Major League Soccer

During the tournament, each MLS club will play three competition matches as part of the Group Sage. The MLS club roster was divided into six groups via random draw: one group of six teams and five groups of four teams. Each group is lettered A through F. According to fresh MLB rules, clubs in Groups B though F will play their inter-group opponents once during the Group Stage, Group A will play three of the possible five Group opponents.

Clubs were seeded based on their standing at the end of the 2019 season.

Dallas, which was part of Group B, was recently dropped from the tournament due to a rise in COVID-19 cases within the team. The schedule continues to be shifted as more cases are discovered within various teams.

During the Group Stage, clubs earn three points for a win, one point for a tie, and no points for a loss. Standings will only take into consideration the Group Stage matches, and not regular season matches already played. These matches count toward the team's 2020 MLS Regular Season standings and Competition standings.

Knockout Stage Competition Matches will not count toward the club's Regular Season standings. The Knockout Stage consists of 4 rounds: the Round of 16, Quarterfinals, Semifinals and the Final.

Earlier this year, the MLS Academies program got a large boost in participants with 64 academy clubs that formerly participated in the U.S. Soccer Development Academy strategically aligning themselves with MLS's existing club academies structure as part of a player development platform. The U.S. and Canada-based teams total now sits at 94. During the 2019 season, MLS invested $70 million in the program.

These academies are already showing results. Academy players who benefitted from the program have been signed to First team, Homegrown pro contracts. The Houston Dynamo was able to use funds to help transport student-athletes who otherwise would not be able to participate in the Academy program. The New England Revolution installed a new Audi Performance Center at their training facility and developed a shuttle program to help with player transportation. The Portland Timbers secured vehicles to transport players and eliminate recruitment challenges due to geographic limitations.

Audi's commitment to the Academies extends into the regular season. The company will contribute $500 for every goal scored during the regular season, $2,000 for every goal scored during the Audi MLS Cup Playoffs series, and $10,000 for every goal scored in MLS Cup. The total contribution for the 2020 season will be up to $1 million dollars.

This season marks the sixth year of support from Audi of America as the official automotive partner for MLS and presenting sponsor of the Audi MLS Cup Playoffs, MLS Cup MVP, and the 2020 MLS Golden Boot award.

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Nuts & Bolts

 
 

The 2022 Audi Q5 Sportback has debuted but Americans will have to wait around six months to get one.

Photo courtesy of Audi AG

The Audi Q5 Sportback takes the traditional dimensions of the Audi Q5 and shaves some off the back of the roof to creating a more sloping design. The result is a model that fits right into Audi's lineup.

At the front of the new all-wheel drive model is an octagonal Singleframe grille that is flanked by large air inlets. The car's headlights feature daytime running lights with the buyer's choice of LED or matrix-design LED technology. At the rear are taillights that feature OLED lighting technology split into three ties of six segments each.

2022 Audi Q5 Sportback

Photo courtesy of Audi AG

Like the roof, the car's windows taper as the design of the vehicle flows backward. Its rear bumper appears to be high-mounted.

Base Audi Q5 Sportback models are powered by a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine that is paired with a 12-volt mild-hybrid system to to deliver 261 horsepower and 273 pound-feet of torque. Buyers can upgrade to the 3.0-liter V6 engine that produces 349 horsepower and 369 pound-feet of torque.

The SQ5 will come standard with adaptive dampers and has an available air suspension and dynamic steering capability.

Each model has Audi's new MIB 3 infotainment system, which can be optioned to include a 12.3-inch digital display in front of the driver as well as virtual cockpit and head-up display technologies. At the center of the dashboard is a 10.1-inch infotainment touch screen with navigation. The system allows for multiple user profiles.

The Audi phone box and a Bang and Olufsen sound system with 3D sound are available.

Inside the cabin, the car has a rear bench seat the can be shifted laterally as well as forward and aft. The seat also reclines.

Each Q5 Sportback comes with a standard hands-free power tailgate.

Buyers can option their model to include numerous driver assist systems including adaptive cruise control with traffic jam assist, standard Audi Side Assist and Audi Pre Sense Rear, lane departure warning, and Parking System Plus.

The 2020 Audi Q5 starts at $43,000. Expect the Sportback model to be slightly pricier when it arrives in the U.S. in the first half of 2021. It will be assembled at the San José Chiapa plant in Mexico.

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Each center followed CDC guidelines for testing eligibility: patients with a doctor order, must have clinical factors of at-risk populations (like children with cancer), or work as health / child care professionals.

Photo courtesy of Hyundai Motor America

Hyundai Hope On Wheels, a charity linked to the Hyundai Motor Company, has provided funding to enable more than one million COVID-19 tests at 23 testing sites nationwide.

In March, the company launched the funding initiative initially for 11 hospitals, which each received a $200,000 grant explicitly to be used for testing. Just after Easter, the company doubled the number receiving support. At the time, the $4 million in grant monies covered 22 hospitals in 16 states. An addition site was added later.

Hyundai Hope on Wheels Testing Hyundai Hope on Wheels donated over $4 million for COVID-19 testing centers at children's hospitals. Photo by Getty Images

Additionally, Hyundai also provided an in-kind donation of 65,000 COVID-19 RT-PCR tests developed by Seegene, a South Korea-based global leader in multiplex molecular diagnostics. Hyundai's headquarters is in South Korea. Seegene's test can simultaneously detect three different genes (N, E and RdRP) of SARS-CoV-2, the virus responsible for COVID-19.

Hyundai and its over 825 dealers also provided support to local institutions with financial assistance, food donations, face mask headband production and loaned vehicles.

"We are grateful for the tireless work of the healthcare workers on the frontlines of the pandemic that made this milestone possible," said Kevin Reilly, Board Member of Hyundai Hope On Wheels and President of Alexandria Hyundai. "Testing is the key to reopening our country safely and we are proud to support our partners in this ongoing and critical effort."

Hyundai Hope on Wheels COVID testing Hyundai's donations helped enable over one million tests. Photo courtesy of Hyundai Motor America

In addition to COVID-19 tests, Hyundai Hope On Wheels provides grants to institutions that research pediatric cancers. Childhood Cancer Awareness Month in September, HHOW will award 26 new research grants totaling $6.2 million to researchers at children's hospitals nationwide in their relentless pursuit of life-saving treatments. The company began their support of this aspect of the healthcare industry in 1998.

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