LA Auto Show 2018: Audi amps up its E-Tron efforts



The Audi E-Tron GT shows one thing: the brand with four rings is getting serious about electric cars

LOS ANGELES, USA — Audi’s e-offensive is getting properly underway. In July the brand launched the E-Tron Quattro battery-powered Sport Utility Vehicle (think electric Q5 or, if you like, a direct rival to Jaguar’s I-Pace), and at LA Audi launched this four-door grand tourer concept car.

The E-Tron GT, when it goes into production, will be about delivering speed, style and comfort with zero tailpipe emissions — the headline numbers are 590hp from a pair of electric motors (one at each axle) giving 0 to 100km/h in just 3.5 seconds, with a range of roughly 400km from a single charge.

An 800-volt charging system would be able to refill the battery to 80 percent capacity in 20 minutes. There is also wiring in place under the floor to allow cable-free inductive charging overnight.

Interestingly, the E-Tron GT has been tagged an Audi Sport model, which helps to bolster the idea that driving thrills and battery power can co-exist in the same car.

You might not quite see this in Singapore next year, though. Audi will only start building the E-Tron GT in 2020, with deliveries set to begin in 2021.

By then you’ll be seeing the E-Tron label (or “e-tron”, to use Audi’s convention) a lot. Next year the wraps come off an E-Tron Sportback, basically a more slinky version of the E-Tron Quattro.

The brand wants 12 electric cars in its line-up by 2025, by which time it is optimistic that as much as 30 percent of its sales will be from electric vehicles.

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Leow Ju-Len
Leow Ju-Len is a lot older than he behaves. He's been writing about cars for 23 years. Someday he might do it coherently. Ju-Len believes in world peace and V8s, but not necessarily in that order.