Audi unveiled its latest prototype, the A6 Avant E-tron, a luxury executive car that appears to be relatively close to being ready for production.
Audi surprised us last year with a concept version of a all-electric A6 sedan, which will be built on a new EV platform that the company is jointly developing with sister company Porsche. The two Volkswagen group companies call the new architecture EV Premium Platform Electric, or PPE. first they started talking about it a few years agoand it’s slated to power the biggest vehicles in Audi and Porsche’s upcoming electric stables.
It is also at least from Audi. four different platform for its electric vehicles. Audi adapted one of its internal combustion platforms to include batteries and electric motors for the original E-tron and E-tron Sportback. The company is using the Porsche Taycan’s J1 platform to power the e-tron GT. and is building the Q4 E-tron and Q4 Sportback E-tron on Volkswagen’s MEB modular platform.
The A6 Avant E-tron is the first “fully tangible look at future production models” to be built on the PPE platform, Audi Technical Development Board member Oliver Hoffmann said in a statement.
Ultimately, much of this won’t matter much to customers, since it’s not like these Audi EVs say “powered by Porsche” on the steering wheel or exterior badging. But there are vast resources at the Volkswagen Group, especially as it tries to break Tesla’s early dominance of the EV market, and Audi is clearly trying to harness the best of what’s available from the larger conglomerate to make a big mark with their electric vehicles.
Calling the A6 Avant E-tron “production ready” isn’t hyperbole; Audi itself describes the concept as “production-oriented,” meaning this car is likely destined for the assembly line in the near future.
If that turns out to be true, the A6 Avant E-tron will earn the distinction of Audi’s longest-range electric vehicle to date, with an estimated 700 kilometers (435 miles) of range using the European WLTP standard, depending on powertrain and engine. model. variant. The sportback will also be quick, accelerating from 0 to 100 km/h (62 mph) in less than four seconds. And with its 800-volt system and charging capacity of up to 270 kW, it can receive enough electrons in just 10 minutes at a fast-charging station to go about 300 kilometers (186 miles).
The A6 Avant E-tron will be similar in size to the Audi A6 and A7, at over 16 feet long, 6.4 feet wide and 4.7 feet tall. The truck’s profile looks sleek, and Audi hopes to squeeze a little more range out of its aerodynamic design. The shape is intended to reduce aerodynamic drag, with Audi claiming a coefficient of 0.22, just a few notches above Mercedes-Benz’s record drag coefficient of 0.20 for the EQS sedan.
As with the A6 E-tron concept, the A6 Avant E-tron will feature “Digital Matrix LED” headlights (which are only available outside the US, though we recently updated our regulations allowing for smarter headlights). These lights, which use a complex shutter system to sculpt LED light into specific shapes and animations, can now project an Audi-developed video game onto a nearby wall or garage door.
Four LED projectors in the corners of the vehicle can create animations of turn signals on the road. And three of them embedded in each side of the body can do everything from presenting welcome messages on the ground for the driver and their passengers to warning cyclists that a door is about to open.
The A6 Avant E-tron is not a vision of a distant future in which self-driving cars function as luxury travel trailers, like Audi Grandsphere and Skysphere Concepts. It’s a more grounded look at what’s just around the corner, namely smart, well-crafted, and expertly appointed luxury electric vehicles that are stylish and roomy enough to serve as chauffeured vehicles for the 1 percent. hundred.