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Audi A3 e-tron Prototype Joins The Fold

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Audi is showcasing the potential of its ‘e-tron’ electrified vehicle technology in virtually its entire lineup, with the A3 hatchback finally join the fold of the automaker’s next-generation vehicle prototypes. Just a few weeks back we saw the highly advanced A5 e-tron quattro prototype, which featured two separate hybrid modules including plug-in hybrid capability.

The latest A3 e-tron, on the other hand, features a more straight-forward electric drive system consisting solely of an electric motor that drives the front wheels. This electric motor is rated at 100 kW (134 horsepower) and 199 pound-feet of torque, which is enough to accelerate the A3 from 0-62 mph in a lethargic 11.2 seconds and see it hit a top speed of 90 mph.

On initial inspection the numbers may appear dreary but note that the car has a range of 87 miles—emissions free--on a single charge of its 26.5 kWh lithium-ion battery. Charging of the batteries takes about nine hours on a regular household power outlet or roughly four hours using a special 400 volt rapid charger.

On the outside, the A3 e-tron looks identical to the regular gasoline and diesel A3s on sale today. Inside, the prototype gets a revised instrument cluster, Alcantara trim, a heated windshield and low power consumption air conditioning system.

No word yet on when production of such a model will commence but Audi’s first all-electric e-tron vehicle is expected to be the R8 e-tron flagship, already confirmed for sale in the U.S. by 2013.
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Comments (3)
  1. Audi needs to shed some pounds in their lineup and reinvent themselves, because efficiency matters.
     
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  2. I think Audi has began to reinvent itself and shed wait. Sure their cars aren't the lightest, but they are working on efficiency. They dropped the V8 in the S4 and put the supercharged V6 in it instead. The results are great. 0-60mph in about 5 seconds. Better than the V8 S4. Even the S5 Cabriolet is starting to be offered with the supercharged V6. Better performance and better fuel economy.
     
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  3. I really like the new move towards efficiency, and I am glad that it even involves the luxury market. It's great to see.
     
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