The Audi e-tron Sportback concept technology study uses three powerful electric motors – one on the front axle and two on the rear axle. Total output is 320 kW, with boosting enabling the driver to temporarily mobilize up to 370 kW.
The electric motors are highly efficient over a wide engine speed range, including at low and intermediate load. They thus combine emotional driving pleasure above all with a high range. The electric motors are liquid-cooled, as are the compact power electronics.
The brand first showcased the concept for the three electric motors in its Audi e-tron quattro concept study car at the 2015 Frankfurt Motor Show. It will now find use in future production versions. And it turns the Audi e-tron Sportback concept into an electrified quattro, because torque is delivered to all four wheels.
The operating principle is as follows. A controller continuously computes the optimal interplay of the electric motors for every driving situation. At low load, solely the motor on the front axle is responsible for propulsion. When the driver floors the accelerator in the S driving mode and all three electric motors are working together, 370 kW of output and more than 800 Nm (590.0 lb‑ft) of torque are available in the boost mode. The sprint from zero to 100 km/h (62.1 mph) is completed in 4.5 seconds; the electronically limited top speed of 210 km/h (130.5 mph) is quickly reached. In the standard D driving program, the e-tron Sportback musters 320 kW.
The key drive train management parameters are the position of the accelerator, the mode chosen in the Audi drive select dynamic handling system, the driving program –
S or D – and the battery charge level. The data on the near surroundings from the sensors for piloted driving, the predictive route data from the navigation system and the real-time traffic information from Audi connect also flow into this computation, always with the aim of optimally adjusting the drive train to the prevailing conditions.
The focus is on not just powerful performance, but also maximum efficiency. Before even starting out, the driver can have the Audi e-tron Sportback concept compute a drive train strategy to minimize energy consumption. When under way, the Audi e-tron recovers large amounts of energy. Because up to moderate braking, the electric motors are solely responsible for decelerating the vehicle. The hydraulic brakes only come into play for heavy braking. The driver can adjust the degree of recuperation in stages. At the lowest setting, no energy is recovered at all in certain situations. Instead, the isolated drive allows the coupé to coast without any retardation torque – one of the most effective strategies for increasing the range.
The concept with the two electric motors on the rear axle offers major advantages when it comes to sporty handling. The Torque Control Manager, which works together with the Electronic Stabilization Control (ESC), actively and variably distributes the power between the wheels as necessary. This torque control provides for maximum dynamics and stability. Thanks to the virtually instantaneous response of the electric motors, the control actions are lightning-quick. The drive concept of the Audi e-tron Sportback concept adapts perfectly to every situation, whether involving transverse or longitudinal dynamics.
The equipment, data and prices specified in this document refer to the model range offered in Germany. Subject to change without notice; errors and omissions excepted.