Audi AG has on display at the Detroit Auto Show a car that could be the brother to the racy e-Tron electric sports car shown at the Frankfurt Motor Show last September. Audi hasn’t committed to producing the car but it is currently assessing how the consumers react before making a decision. Audi however has a plan in place to produce the larger e-Tron in 2012.
Rupert Stadler, Audi AG chairman, said that the e-tron investment is part of Audi’s $10.5 billion R&D expenditure between 2009 and 2012. Of this amount, $8.5 billion will be spent on future products and next-generation drivetrains. The e-tron showcased in Detroit is similar enough to the R8 supercar that they could pass as siblings.
However, the e-Tron is smaller than the TT coupe and is propelled by two 150-kilowatt electric motors, which are powered by lithium ion batteries.
It is claimed that the car can go from 0 to 62 mph in 5.9 seconds and has a projected range of 155 miles, according to Michael Dick, Audi board member for technical development.
The e-Tron’s construction is also quite impressive. It has an all-aluminum spaceframe, while the doors, hood and trunklid are made from carbon fiber.
This version of the e-tron weighs about 2,970 pounds, 550 pounds less than the original Frankfurt version. Audi’s commitment to accelerate hybrid-vehicle development is made all the more evident with its unveiling of the e-tron. Audi is sidestepping mild hybrid development and is moving ahead with its unveiling of full hybrid versions of the Q5 crossover and A8 sedan later this year.