So, Audi rolled out the pretty damn impressive e-Tron at Frankfurt this year. They had been rumored to be working on some sort of EV for a while, but nobody expected them to show what is, essentially, an electric powered version of their impressive R8 supercar. On e the one hand, though, Audi had to do something. The gauntlet had been thrown down by German rival Mercedes with their electric version of the upcoming re-done Gullwing. So it follows that Audi had to respond. Just in time to get used to the shock of the e-Tron, comes the second stunning announcement that Audi is actually going to build and sell the thing.
\”I expect we will see running examples in the next 24 months,\” Johan de Nysschen, the president of Audi of America said of the e-Tron. The future model will be based on the e-Tron concept.
Note that this will be a production vehicle BASED on the e-Tron which is a concept. It remains to be seen just how closely the production e-Tron will be to the concept, which, although it looks like an R8, actually is between it and the Audi TT in size.
Also up in the air is just how much of the show car’s drivetrain will make it to the showroom. Personally, I hope every last bit of it. The e-Tron has 42.4-kilowatt-hour, liquid-cooled lithium-ion battery with a range of 154 miles and a recharge time is six to eight hours at 230 volts. With four motors producing 230 kilowatts (the equivalent of 313 horsepower) and a mind boggling 3,319 pound-feet of torque. A production e-Tron could set new benchmarks in so many ways that it could end up reorienting our thinking about what a performance car can be.
So c’mon Audi. Don’t hold back … let the full-zoot out and let’s see what other car companies do in response. Tesla, I’m looking at you.