For the last few years Audi, the German luxury carmaker, has been showcasing its automotive innovations at the CES in Las Vegas. This year’s all-digital CES was no different, where Audi showcased the future of mobility – an electric, of course. During a digital presentation, Audi shared the stage with Formula E racer Lucas di Grassi, the Brazilian race driver, to promote the e-tron GT concept.
Lucas di Grassi has been driving for Audi since 2012. In 2014, he won the inaugural race of the then newly launched Formula E, followed three years later by the title win with Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler.
On 32 occasions, di Grassi stood on the podium for Audi in the past six years, which makes him the most successful driver in the electric racing series. The e-tron GT concept gets 434 kW (590 hp) system power.
Separate electric motors are fitted to the front and rear axles. In both cases, these are permanently excited synchronous motors. These put down the torque onto the road via all four driven wheels – so, the e-tron GT concept is also a genuine quattro, and an electric quattro to be precise, since there is no mechanical link between the front and rear axle. The electronic control system coordinates the drive between the axles as well as between left and right wheels.
The e-tron GT concept is claimed to accelerate from 0 to 100 km/h in around 3.5 seconds, before touching a top speed of 240 km/h; it goes from 0 to 200 km/h in about 12 seconds.
Its range is over 400 km, determined according to the new WLTP standard. The drive energy comes from a lithium-ion battery with an energy content of more than 90 kWh,which takes up the entire underfloor area between the front and rear axle with its flat design. An advantage of its design is its extremely low centre of gravity (comparable with that of the Audi R8), which benefits handling.
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