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Audi releases exterior sketch of 311-mile e-tron quattro concept for Frankfurt; 3-motor powertrain

Audi has released an exterior sketch of the 311-mile-range (500 km) Audi e-tron quattro concept it will unveil at the International Motor Show (IAA) 2015 in Frankfurt next month. (Earlier post.) The sporty SUV study is based on the second-generation modular longitudinal platform (MLB), which provides considerable scope for the drive system and package. The concept provides an outlook on the brand’s first large-series electric car.

Audi is leveraging its experience with the electrically driven Audi R8 e-tron sports car (earlier post) for the drive system. Three electric motors—one on the front axle and two on the rear axle—drive the Audi e-tron quattro concept.


The large lithium-ion battery pack—comprising modules from either LG Chem or Samsung SDI (earlier post)—is positioned between the axles and below the passenger compartment. This installation position provides for a low center of gravity and a balanced axle load distribution, and gives the car better driving dynamics and driving safety than other vehicles in the segment.

The Audi e-tron quattro concept follows the Audi “Aerosthetics” concept, combining technical measures for reducing aerodynamic drag with creative design solutions. Movable aerodynamic elements at the front, on the sides and at the rear improve the air flow around the car. The aerodynamically optimized underbody is completely closed. With a cd value of 0.25, the car sets a new record in the SUV segment. This contributes considerably to the long range of more than 500 kilometers.

Its length is between that of the Audi Q5 and the Q7. Its typical SUV body and flat, coupe-like cabin give the Audi e-tron quattro concept a very dynamic appearance. The spacious interior offers room for four people.


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This sketch is a fairytale just like the sketch for GM's Volt was a fairytale. The real thing will look far more boring and will be far more practical to drive and produce just like GM's real world Volt.

Audi has a fairly accurate production model or they could not give us the precise cd value of 0.25. Why do we not see that production model instead of this fairytale sketch? It is so dishonest and typical for old school marketing in the auto industry. Do as Tesla do it and show us the real production prototype and call it a production concept.

It is a huge disappointment to me to hear that this Audi BEV is based on the second-generation modular longitudinal platform (MLB). To do this right you need to have a dedicated platform for BEVs only as the "DNA" of a dedicated BEV is very different from anything else. You got to make compromises to have a platform that can fit whatever. Do like Tesla does and make a platform that is dedicated for BEVs only.

One last thing. The 311 miles range could be anything between 200 and 400 miles as it is not mentioned how they measured it. The Tesla Model S 85D is good for 434 miles at 45 mph with the aircon off. See here http://www.teslamotors.com/models#battery-options

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