The Audi e-tron prototype combines enormous power and high efficiency. With a system output of up to 300 kW, the full-size SUV with a fully electric drive accelerates from zero to 100 km/h (62.1 mph) in less than six seconds.
In the WLTP test cycle, it covers more than 400 kilometers (248.5 mi) on one battery charge. One important factor for the long range is the most innovative recuperation concept among the competitors. The electric SUV proved this with an impressive performance at Pikes Peak.
The scenario: Each kilometer downhill brings around an additional kilometer in range
At 4,302 meters (14,115 ft), Pikes Peak looms high in the southern Rocky Mountains. Where Walter Röhrl won the world’s most famous hill climb in the Audi Sport quattro S1 back in 1987, it is the Audi e-tron prototype that is now causing a sensation with its recuperation system that is variable and thus the most efficient among all the competitors.
The driver can select the degree of coasting recuperation in three stages using the steering wheel paddles. At the lowest stage, the vehicle coasts with no additional drag torque when the driver releases the accelerator pedal. At the highest stage, the electric SUV reduces the speed noticeably – the driver can slow down and accelerate using only the accelerator pedal. This creates the one-pedal feeling. There is no need to use the brake pedal in this deceleration scenario.
This system allows the electric SUV to exploit its maximum recuperation potential in a targeted manner with support from the standard efficiency assist. The system uses radar sensors, camera images, navigation data and Car-to-X information to detect the traffic environment and the route. The driver is shown corresponding information in the Audi virtual cockpit as soon as it would be sensible to take the foot off the accelerator pedal. By interacting with the optional adaptive cruise assist, the efficiency assist can also decelerate and accelerate the electric SUV predictively.
The asynchronous motors: strong performance
What is fascinating about the SUV with electric drive is not just its efficiency but also its performance. Its two electric motors have an output of 265 kW and develop 561 Nm (413.8 lb-ft) of torque. They can deliver this peak performance for up to 60 seconds. This way, they allow the vehicle to accelerate from a standstill to the electronically limited top speed of 200 km/h (124.3 mph) several times consecutively without output losses.