From the time the Audi e-tron GT was apparent in a bastard aiguille on Monday, journalists at the 2018 LA Auto Appearance accept been aggravating to break the addle of its design. Is it a muscular, low-to-the-ground electric A7 with avant-garde achievement and an R8 roofline? Is it alone an Audi adaptation of the attainable Porsche Taycan electric supercar? Or do the alluring curve of the Audi e-tron GT accommodate a added bulletin about the brand’s electric intentions?
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The acknowledgment is all of the above. There’s no agnosticism that Audi designers were aggravating to accomplish a accustomed four-passenger Audi sports auto that aloof happens to be electric, rather than a affected battery-powered abstraction that shouts EV. “You adeptness anticipate it’s conservative, but I anticipate it’s perfect,” said Marc Lichte, Audi’s arch artist from the LA auto appearance floor. “We’ve apparent how added avant-garde cars can attending aberrant and they’re not successful.”
Lichte accepted the Tesla Model S, which he said follows added acceptable notions of automotive aesthetics. At the same, he said that Tesla started with a clean, white area of paper. “But we at Audi accept a history with millions of barter active our cars,” said Lichte. “We bare to articulation architectonics with our history.”
Audi artist Marc Lichte gave a bastard aiguille of the Audi e-tron GT on the eve of the 2018 LA Auto Show.
From my perspective, it’s a acceptable move. Audi’s all-electric GT should abduction the absorption of cast enthusiasts who adulation archetypal Audi architectonics (and don’t necessarily affliction about a alteration to apple-pie electric ammunition or extenuative the planet).
Audi’s admission to rolling out EVs is to alpha with the Audi e-tron SUV and its sportback alternative – battery-powered cartage targeted at the affection of the ultra-popular crossover segment. Those two vehicles, which are due abutting year, don’t use a lot of razzle-dazzle. Audi will additionally acquaint an alike added attainable crossover application the Volkswagen committed MEB electric belvedere in 2020. That makes three out of the four Audi EVs advancing in the abutting two years.
Audi e-tron GT concept
But the e-tron cast will not abide alone of SUVs, which artist Lichte said are almost accessible to amalgamation with a big array pack. “We accept a bright action to accomplish an electric ancestors with two types of cartage – aboriginal SUVs and again a additional ambit of aura cars that are adventurous and accept a low floor,” he said. The e-tron GT gets as low to the arena as accessible by creating cut-outs in the array packaging to accomplish allowance for passengers’ feet.
It’s alluring to watch Audi, footfall by step, add battery-powered cartage throughout its lineup. The aggregation says 30 percent of its sales will be electric cartage by 2025. So it makes faculty to accompany some of Audi’s sports car ancestry into the mix. Hence the e-tron GT, the fourth Audi EV affective into production. Initial deliveries are accepted in aboriginal 2021.
Audi e-tron GT concept
The e-tron GT abstraction doesn’t aloof borrow the Porsche Taycan’s J1 architecture. It shares it. The key for this architectonics is its adeptness to accommodate 800-volt ultra-fast charging in which 200-plus afar of ambit can be added in a 20-minute artery pit stop. That’s game-changing stuff. So let’s not get too afraid up yet on the exact shape, features, or abeyant amount tag of the e-tron GT because it’s alone the aboriginal agent with an Audi brand that will advertise this fast-charging, alley trip-enabling capability. (And it’s still two years away.)
Audi hinted to me that the e-tron GT is a dispatch bean against added EV sedans – conceivably conventional-looking battery-powered A7 or A5 using the aforementioned long-distance, fast-charging capabilities as the e-tron GT. Those advanced models will use the abutting abundance of Audi/Porsche EV architectonics accepted as Premium Belvedere Electric (PPE). Audi says that PPE will become the electric foundation for all high-volume agent segments.
Matthew Mostafaei, e-tron agent manager, told me that the Taycan’s J1 arrangement was acclimated in the GT apparent in LA to accumulate the e-tron affairs affective advanced while PPE is still actuality developed. The J1 architectonics represents the aboriginal time that Porsche is demography the advance on a technology belvedere aggregate by the two brands. Audi developed the e-tron GT’s abeyance and drive dynamics, as able-bodied as the exterior and autogenous design.
The adeptness to allegation at speeds that are two to three times as fast as a Tesla Supercharger requires a altered array architectonics and a atypical way to air-conditioned the array backpack by cartoon calefaction out of the system. “We angled the cardinal of beef in alternation to accredit the cool fast charging,” said Mostafaei. The fast-charging stations actuality deployed Electrify America, a accessory of Volkswagen, will use liquid-cooled cables additionally to advice administer the heat.
In Los Angeles, Audi admiral again referred to the e-tron GT’s array backpack as autumn 95 kilowatt-hours alike admitting the columnist absolution vaguely reads, “more than 90 kWh.” That should be abundant to accommodate abutting to 300 afar of active range, although the official columnist absolution pegs the ambit at 400 kilometers (or about 250 miles) application the WLTP standard. The advertisement additionally acceptable underplays the GT’s zero-to-60-mph achievement at 3.5 seconds.
Controlling calefaction on the base of the car was the acumen accustomed for the e-tron GT’s best affecting architectonics innovation: the RS-inspired bore faux grille. Andreas Mindt, an Audi exoteric designer, abiding me that it’s a allegory that EVs don’t charge grilles like accepted vehicles. Yes, a big area of what appears to be a grille on the GT’s advanced fascia is bankrupt off. “There’s an aperture beneath the faux grille that allows air to breeze through the alarming that cools the aqueous that in about-face cools the battery,” said Mostafaei. “It acts like a radiator.”
The two advanced intakes on anniversary ancillary of the grille approach air anon about the wheels. And in the middle, the air campaign from the alley up through the awning for bigger aerodynamics – article that the Jaguar I-Pace does added overtly. It’s adamantine to say how abundant these architectonics appearance advice to administer the temperature of the array or abate drag. But they are added adorable to me than, for example, the edgeless advanced end of the Hyundai Kona Electric and Tesla Model 3.
If those architectonics appearance alone add incremental gains, that’s okay. Acceptable architectonics and engineering is a bold of inches. You adeptness additionally alibi Audi’s use of vegan autogenous abstracts as antic touches that accord Audi a adventitious to grab a little blooming cred. What seems acknowledgment and added accessible is putting a Level 2 charging anchorage on both abandon of the car for easier access.
Audi e-tron GT concept
Audi arch artist Lichte repeatdely emphasized the accent of the e-tron GT’s single-frame fascia. It houses the grille, which uses the aforementioned blush as the vehicle’s anatomy while surrounding it on both abandon in a darker hue. That’s a changeabout from Audi’s accepted architectonics treatment. Not alone does it attending aciculate attending but it will advice beard the adjustment of cameras, radar, and lidar acclimated in the assembly adaptation of the e-tron GT. Mostafaei told me that those sensors are actuality acclimated to added accurately barometer agent acceleration and thereby admit and actual slippage in, for example, asperous or albino active conditions. “We use all the sensors on the agent to actuate the acceleration rather than alone wheel-speed sensors to actuate slip,” said Mostafaei.
The deceptively advantageous advanced fascia is a acceptable archetype of how there’s a lot added activity on with the e-tron GT abstraction than meets the eye. While we’re all active aggravating to analyze if the electric GT’s achievement are like an Audi TT or the roofline swoops bottomward like an R8, Audi is added focused on how to advance the clip of change appear EV powertrains, ultra-fast array charging, and accretion levels of autonomy. And at the aforementioned time, by the way, they managed to aftermath the best handsome electric agent back the Tesla Model S.
Volume assembly of the e-tron GT starts in backward 2020. Audi says the GT’s price, not yet announced, will be “competitive.”
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