Audi Shows Off the Gutted Near-Production Model e-Tron in Detroit
In brief: Rolling into Detroit, Audi showed the near-production concept model e-tron, due to hit streets in limited production numbers in 2011. The changes literally gut the car of everything it had going for it.
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The greatest difference is in Audi abandoning the original Quattro Drive plan, dumping a lot of power in the process, and also losing a lot of gross vehicle weight as well. Body styling changes moving the car closer to the Audi TT rather than the R8 are also given.
In the e-tron concept, Audi had four electric motors mounted, one for each wheel. Now they're down to two, both on the rear axle. Their Quattro just went Dual.
The body dimensions shrunk considerably, down to 155 inches (from 167.72) x 70 inches (from 74.8) x 48.43 inches high (from 48). This shrinkage plus a 156 pound drop in battery pack weight lowered the overall GVW to 2,976 pounds.
All of those cuts gain only 1 mile of range and lower the power output by about a third, going from 3,319lb-ft at the wheels to only 1,956lb-ft.
That output drop also drops the performance numbers of the new e-tron, putting the 0-62mph in 5.9 seconds and 37-75mph to 5.1 seconds. The earlier numbers were a much more impressive (and Tesla Roadster-competitive) 4.8 and 4.1 seconds respectively.
Other body changes include the smoothing of the panels, removing the character lines of the original. This, plus the size changes, signal that this is either a total change on the original e-tron concept or Audi plans to build two models of the concept. Some indications hint at the latter, but Audi was not clear on this, so the assumption is that this is the new version of the vehicle.
And so ...
If so... hopefully, Audi will also seriously gut the estimated $160,000 price tag on this one too.
Photo credits: Audi
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