|Audi e-tron Spyder. Click to enlarge.|
Audi introduced the e-tron Spyder, a study of an open sports car with plug-in hybrid drive, at the Paris Motor Show. The two-seater is equipped with a 221 kW (300 hp) twin-turbo V6 TDI at the rear axle and two electric motors producing a total of 64 kW at the front axle.
The Audi e-tron Spyder requires on average just 2.2L diesel/100 km (107 mpg US), corresponding to CO2 emissions of 59 g/km (95 g/mile). A range of more than 1,000 kilometers (621 miles) is possible with the 50-liter (13.21 gallons US) tank. A 9.1 kWh battery supports an all-electric range of up to 50 kilometers (31 miles). The top speed in this mode is 60 km/h (37 mph).
The engine develops up to 650 N·m (479 lb-ft) of torque; the two motors deliver a combined 352 Nm (260 lb-ft). The Audi e-tron Spyder can accelerate to 100 km/h (62 mph) in 4.4 seconds; top speed is electronically governed at 250 km/h (155 mph).
This marks the first use of a new generation of the six-cylinder, 3.0 TDI that breathes through two turbochargers and produces 221 kW (300 hp)—50 hp more than the previous stage, which debuted a few months ago in the new Audi A8. The mid-mounted, longitudinal 3.0 TDI engine drives the rear wheels via a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission.
The normal distribution of the tractive power is biased toward the rear axle in accordance with the weight distribution of the e-tron Spyder and the dynamic shift in axle load during acceleration. Similar to with a pure mid-engine sports car, roughly 75% of the torque goes to the rear and 25% to the front. If an axle slips, this balance can be varied thanks to the central control of the entire drive system in combination with the ESP. The concept thus enjoys all of the advantages of quattro technology.
The combination of the mid-mounted TDI engine and the two electric motors at the front axle also make it possible to intelligently control the lateral dynamics of the e-tron.
Similar to what the sport differential does in conventional quattro vehicles, torque vectoring—he targeted acceleration of individual wheels—makes the e-tron Spyder even more dynamic while simultaneously enhancing driving safety. Understeer and oversteer can be corrected by not only targeted activation of the brakes, but also by precise increases in power lasting just a few milliseconds. The concept car remains extremely neutral even under great lateral acceleration.
The body structure is based on Audi Space Frame (ASF) technology and was realized as a hybrid construction, with the hood and numerous aerodynamic components made of carbon. In ASF technology, the body’s supporting structure is made of extruded aluminum sections and die-castings. Aluminum panels are incorporated into this skeleton to form a positive connection and perform a load-bearing role. Each individual component of the ASF space frame is optimized for its specific task by the use of widely differing shapes and cross-sections, combining maximum stability with minimal weight.
Despite the complex drive system layout with two electric motors and their respective drive systems plus the TDI engine, the Audi e-tron Spyder show car only weighs around 1,450 kilograms (3,197 lbs).
The trapeze of the single-frame grille dominates the wedge-shaped front end and is flanked by two large air intakes which serve as cooling intakes for the electric drive system and also for the TDI engine at the rear of the vehicle.