Audi debuts Tesla Model S fighter at Los Angeles auto show

November 28, 2018 06:01 CET

Audi gave a glimpse of what the e-tron GT, its first series production electric sedan, will look like when it unveiled a concept study at the Los Angeles auto show on Wednesday.

The GT concept’s production version is due to go on sale in 2020 as a rival to the Tesla Model S. It will be Audi’s third new-generation volume electric car. It follows e-tron SUV that is now being rolled out in Europe and the edgier looking e-tron Sportback sibling that arrives late next year.

The Audi e-tron cars are underpinned by the J1 architecture developed by Porsche for its Taycan sedan, scheduled to launch next year.

The GT concept’s specifications are very close to those of the Taycan. It uses a set of dual permanently synchronous electric motors, one driving each axle. Together they generate a combined output of 582 hp – just less than the Taycan’s 600-plus hp.

The GT’s acceleration should nearly match the Porsche as well, with acceleration from 0-100 kph (0-62 mph), taking about 3.5 seconds. In just over 12 seconds the e-tron GT should be able to reach 200 kph (124 mph) before topping out at a maximum speed of 240 kph to conserve the energy supply.

“One feature that not all the competition can match is the option of fully utilizing the [vehicle’s] acceleration potential several times in succession,” the company said in a statement.

The e-tron GT’s battery is sufficiently large in capacity with more than  90 kilowatt-hour to provide for a range of more than 400 km (248 miles) under Europe’s new WLTP homologation test.

The car also employs the same 800-volt electrical architecture from the Taycan that enables the e-tron GT to recharge 80 percent of its capacity within 20 minutes.

At 4960 mm (195 inches) in length and 1960 mm (77 feet) in width it is slightly larger than the e-tron SUV but is substantially lower with a height of 1380 mm (53 inches) even as they sit atop massive 22-inch wheels. The wheelbase itself is 2900 mm (114 inches) long, providing a maximum of space in the interior cabin.

Special features of the concept include the matrix LED headlights that use laser light for the high beam. All interior coverings are vegan-friendly synthetic materials and the deep-pile floor carpet is made of recycled fishing nets to emphasize sustainability.

Wireless charging

The car has been designed to be charged at home wirelessly through its electromagnetic induction. A charging pad with an integrated coil is installed permanently on the floor where the car will be parked. The alternating magnetic field induces an alternating voltage across an air gap in the secondary coil fitted in the floor of the car.

“With a charging output of 11 kilowatts, the Audi e-tron GT concept can be fully charged conveniently overnight,” the automaker said.

The brand’s high-performance unit, Audi Sport, will produce the car in Neckarsulm, southern Germany, starting in late 2020, with the first deliveries due in early 2021.

You can reach Christiaan Hetzner at christiaan.hetzner@gmail.com.

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