Audi Future Performance

Johannes Köbler
Oliver Strohbach

Tobias Sagmeister

High-voltage – Audi is putting electromobility into volume production

From 48 to 400 volts – Audi has set a clear course for the future of electromobility. The Audi e-tron quattro concept provides a glimpse of the production version.


Sporty, efficient and suitable for everyday use – Audi has set a clear course for the future of electromobility and the Audi e-tron quattro concept points the way. The sporty fullsize SUV, which will enter series production in 2018, is a purely electric car. One of its three electric motors drives the front axle, while the two others power the rear axle. Together, the electric motors generate 320 kW (up to 370 kW for a short period) and more than 800 Nm of torque. Its performance is on par with that of a sports car – the Audi etron quattro concept accelerates from 0 to 100 km/h in 4.6 seconds and reaches a limited top speed of 210 km/h.

The technology study’s large, flat lithiumion battery is fixed to the bodyshell in the floor of the occupant cell, where it provides the prerequisites for dynamic handling – a balanced weight distribution between the axles of 52:48 and a low center of gravity. The battery is designed for maximum energy, with a capacity of 95 kWh delivering a range of more than 500 km.

Dynamic silhouette: The greenhouse of the Audi e-tron quattro concept is flat and low like a coupe. The cd figure is just 0.25.

The technology study’s Combined Charging System (CCS) facilitates charging with direct and alternating current. DC charging, the solution for long distances, takes very little time. At a 150 kW charging station, the battery is 80 percent full after half an hour, with a further 20 minutes taking it up to 100 percent. In a domestic garage, the Audi e-tron quattro concept is charged by induction with alternating current using the convenient Audi Wireless Charging system. The piloted parking system guides the car to the correct position above the floor-mounted charging plate.

On sunny days, a solar roof also contributes up to 320 watts. The heat pump for the interior plays a central role in the thermal management system by gathering waste heat from the electrical components and thus aiding overall efficiency.

It is the three electric motors that make the technology study an electrified quattro – an e-tron quattro. An intelligent drive management system regulates how they interact depending on the situation, with the top priority being the highest level of efficiency. The driver selects the degree of recuperation, the drive program and the mode of the Audi drive select system. When driving quickly on winding roads, the torque control manager distributes the forces between the rear wheels as required. This torque vectoring is lightning fast, delivering exceptionally dynamic performance and excellent stability.

The running gear rounds off the hi-tech character of this concept study. The adaptive air suspension sport with regulated damping lowers the bodyshell at higher speeds, which improves airflow around the vehicle. The dynamic all-wheel steering combines dynamic steering at the front axle with rear-wheel steer.

The design of the Audi etron quattro concept is a harmonious combination of aerodynamics, drive and the spatial concept. The five-door sport SUV is 4.88 meters long, 1.93 meters wide and just 1.54 meters high. Its silhouette, with its extremely low green­house pulled in tightly at the back, is coupe-like and dynamic. The cd figure is just 0.25 – a new best for the SUV segment. Inside, there’s room for four adults and 615 liters of luggage. The interior has a lean and light feel, its architecture melding with the operating and display concept. All displays in the interior are conceived in OLED technology – the paper-thin films can be cut to any preferred shape.

On the front lid, along the flanks and at the rear, movable aerodynamic elements control the airflow upward of 80 km/h as required, thus improving the flow through and around the vehicle. The vertical separation edges on the side walls and the completely closed underbody also number among the aerodynamic measures. Cameras replace the exterior mirrors, while the door handles are recessed into the door bodies. Vir­tually no wind noise is audible from inside the car and there certainly isn’t any engine noise as such – the fascination of electric driving reveals itself in glorious silence.

At the front end, the headlamps feature Audi’s new matrix laser technology. Beneath them is a new signature light comprised of five elements, each consisting of one LED light unit with an extremely flat OLED element (organic light emitting diode). The rear lights are likewise made up of two sections: Nine red OLED units on each side perform the tail light function in the top section, with three more beneath.

The concept study is equipped with all the technologies conceived by Audi for piloted driving. The data they provide is collated in the central driver assistance control device (zFAS) in the luggage compartment. This, in turn, generates a complete model of the car’s surroundings in real time and makes the information available to all the assistance systems and the systems for piloted driving. These Audi technologies are scheduled to enter series production in the near future.


1  Front electric motor
2  Power electronics
3  Lithium-ion battery with a capacity of 95 kWh
4  Two rear electric motors
5  Solar roof with a peak output of 320 W

Audi e-tron quattro concept – Electric drivetrain with an output of up to 370 kW.