Audi unveils first luxury-class e-tron concept car in Beijing


April 25, 2012

The world premiere of the Audi A6 L e-tron concept the the 2012 Beijing Motor Show

The world premiere of the Audi A6 L e-tron concept the the 2012 Beijing Motor Show

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Audi has added to its e-tron series of electric and hybrid concept cars with the unveiling of the A6 L e-tron concept at 2012 Beijing Motor Show. Joining the Frankfurt, Detroit, A1, Spyder and A3 e-tron models, the A6 L e-tron concept is the company’s first luxury-class e-tron concept vehicle. Based on the new A6 L, it is a plug-in hybrid that boasts an electric-only driving range of 80 km (49.71 miles).

Audi chose Beijing to unveil the A6 L e-tron concept as the A6 L, which is produced at its Changchun plant in a joint venture with Chinese automaker, First Automobile Works (FAW), is the company’s bestselling model in China.

The concept vehicle combines a 2.0 TFSI engine outputting 155 kW (211 hp) and an electric motor generating a peak output of 70 kW (95 hp). It can be driven powered only by the internal combustion engine, only the electric drive, or in hybrid mode, with a hybrid control module choosing the best mode to maximize driving range.

An energy flow indicator on the instrument panel lets the driver know the current operating mode and which hybrid drive components are currently active. The display screen also shows the average fuel economy and amount of energy recovered over five-minute intervals.

Audi has also replaced the tachometer with a powerometer that indicates the total power of the drive system on a scale of zero to 100 percent. An auxiliary instrument displays the current charge state of the liquid-cooled lithium-ion battery that is located in a collision-protected space at the rear of the vehicle.

In electric mode, the vehicle boasts a range of 80 km (49.71 miles) at a constant speed of 60 km/h (37 mph). This is a big step up from the 3 km (1.86 mile) electric-only range offered by the electrified drive systems found in the company’s current Q5 Quattro, A6 and A8 hybrids.

The concept car has a body that is around 10 percent aluminum and is identical to that of the A6 L business sedan, with a 3.01 m (9.88 ft) wheelbase, 5.02 m (16.47 ft) length, 1.87 m (6.14 ft) width, and 1.46 m (4.79 ft) height. A single-frame grille with slender cross-bars and nearly-covered air intakes that are common to all e-tron models visually differentiate it from the production A6 L.

Audi says the use of aluminum results in a body that is around 15 percent lighter than comparable all-steel designs, and that all future Audi models will be lighter than their predecessors. This will be achieved through the use of combinations of lightweight materials, including carbon fiber-reinforced polymer (CFRP).

As the first luxury e-tron concept, the interior of the vehicle boasts all of the A6 line’s luxury-class features, including seat ventilation and massage functions, Bose surround sound system, deluxe air conditioner with air ionizer, and MMI navigation plus navigation system with touchpad character input and the ability to recognize 29,000 Chinese characters.

Driver assistance and safety systems include active lane change assist, parking assist, night vision assistance that highlights detected pedestrians, and a pre sense system designed to reduce the severity of accidents.

Although Audi designed the A6 L e-tron concept specifically around Chinese requirements, there’s no word on whether the car will make the leap from concept to production vehicle there or in other markets. However, the company has revealed the e-tron Frankfurt – also known as the R8 e-tron - will get a short production run later this year, while the A3 e-tron will enter full production in 2014. Audi says these will be followed by other “New Energy Vehicles.”

Source: Audi

About the Author
Darren Quick Darren's love of technology started in primary school with a Nintendo Game & Watch Donkey Kong (still functioning) and a Commodore VIC 20 computer (not still functioning). In high school he upgraded to a 286 PC, and he's been following Moore's law ever since. This love of technology continued through a number of university courses and crappy jobs until 2008, when his interests found a home at Gizmag. All articles by Darren Quick

Gawd that is a fugly front,, no,no body and the wheels too, and I own three Audis that is fugly gonna stick with my 100 Audi Avant, yes she is Red bitchin' daily driver she has Audi 200 suspension and girling brakes, and hush I have #196 URQ and an '86 modded by 034-EFI 350 hp 4000 CSQ, this car is a turd, your girl will dump you and move in with me, yes heated seats in all three, everything works, can new cars say the same?I I see newer A-4 like 2001 and the seats are trash, my Avant is an 1989 and my car is perfect, everything works, the 01 is a toilet

Bill Bennett

Oh, another car like the Volt... I was hoping for pure electric, oh well...

Adam Ackels

They could have achieved the same mileage by installing a much less expensive waste heat recovery system instead, and you would not have to buy a new battery pack in a few years.

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