The Audi R8 e-tron is undoubtedly a car of the future that ironically had a very troubled past. For those who remember, the concept for this car went as far back as 2010 when Audi wanted to have an electric version of its R8 sports car (which was featured in the first Iron Man movie).
However, the company halted development on the project as its battery technology could only allow the car a measly 215 kilometers (133.6 miles) when fully charged. Thankfully, the carmaker was able to improve on its battery technology and promptly resumed work on the R8 e-tron. Now boasting more than double the mileage (450 kilomenters/279.6 miles) of the first concept, Audi is now positioning its improved e-tron electric supercar as a car of the future.
Specs That Matter
With a design reminiscent of the original R8, the Audi R8 e-tron has the looks and power of a premium sports car. Aside from its impressive aesthetics, the R8 e-tron also features a powerful 456 horsepower electric engine that can generate 679 pound-feet of torque. What’s more impressive is that the car can go from 0-69 miles per hour in 3.9 seconds and then reaching top speeds of 155 mph. As for charging, the improved battery technology has also resulted in faster re-charge times. Now you can get a full charge on this car after plugging it in for just 2 hours.
Another feature of the Audi R8 e-tron that the carmaker was proud to announce in CES Asia and in its press releases was the car’s integration of piloted driving technology. Audi has been testing this technology for quite some time now and it just so happened that they were able to somewhat perfect it for their flagship electric supercar. With that said, there are people who might not be too keen on leaving their lives and safety to a computer program.
Official pricing for the R8 e-tron was still unavailable as of this writing but it’s already safe to assume that it’s not going to be in the same price bracket as Nissan’s Leaf or Chevrolet’s Volt considering the base price of the R8 is around $115000. It’s widely speculated that this self-driving electric sports car is going to cost more than the electric car it was supposed to compete with, the Tesla Model S. Of course this is still speculation and nothing more. We won’t know whether this is true or not until the carmaker actually breaks their silence on the pricing. Regardless of the price, it’s always good to see that carmakers are becoming conscious of the need for more electric vehicles on the roads.
Gordon's expertise in the area of industrial energy efficiency and alternative energy. He is an experienced electrical engineer with a Masters degree in Alternative Energy technology. He is the co-founder of several renewable energy media sites including Solar Thermal Magazine.