Turns out yesterday’s quattro Concept wasn’t the only big surprise Audi had in store for this week’s 2010 Paris Auto Show. Today we were treated with yet another e-tron electric vehicle, the 2010 Audi e-tron Spyder--though this one is very different to the stuff we’ve seen in the past.
Not only is the e-tron Spyder a convertible, but it’s also a conventional plug-in hybrid. It features a 3.0-liter V-6 TDI turbodiesel engine driving the rear wheels and twin-electric motors driving the front wheels. Peak output from the V-6 diesel stands at 300 horsepower, while the electric motors are rated at 85 horsepower a piece.
With a 0-62 mph time of 4.4 seconds and an electrically limited top speed of 155 mph, the e-tron Spyder certainly packs a punch when it comes to sports car performance. Additionally, the e-tron Spyder isn’t about zero-emissions, it’s more about low mileage performance driving--just what we like to see. Audi’s engineers have neutered the potential of its electric-only range with, pegging it at just 31 miles and at a shockingly abysmal 37 mph maximum speed.
So what kind of mileage numbers can we expect? How ‘bout 106.92 mpg? Not bad for a car that can do 0-62 in under 5.0 seconds.
Thanks also to its low weight (3,197 pounds--respectable for a hybrid), short wheelbase and perfect 50:50 weight distribution for dynamic handling, the Audi e-tron Spyder should also be a hoot to drive around the twisty stuff.
The normal distribution of the tractive power is biased toward the rear axle, with roughly 75 percent of torque going to the rear wheels and 25 percent to the front. If an axle slips, this balance can be varied thanks to the central control of the complete all-wheel drive system in combination with the ESP. The combination of the mid-mounted TDI engine and the two electric motors at the front axle also make it possible to intelligently control the dynamics of the e-tron.