Audi E-Tron GT Concept First Drive: Look Out, Tesla



I ease the muscle, four-door that is low-slung on the road and to the Friday morning visitors. The acceleration is both swift and largely quiet. A complain that is distant rises in pitch as rate rises, followed closely by the of tires that are 22-inch that are low-profile in war with a stiffly sprung calibrated suspension. Concept car drives happen in the security of a secluded proving ground or a racetrack that is closed. However, I’m pushing the hand-finished Audi E-Tron GT idea on the cratered streets of downtown L.A. There’s assurance for you.

Audi’s confident because this “notion ” is no hand-built fantasy machine, designed to do its work sitting under lights on an automobile show stand. It s an early prototype of this creation Audi E-Tron GT. Change the wheels and tires insert rearview mirrors and door grips, take away the luminous e-tron logos front and back, and what you’ve got is everything you’ll find sitting in Audi dealerships in 2020. Revealed just days before the first media forces of this manufacturing E-Tron SUV in Abu Dhabi, the E-Tron GT concept underscores Audi’s soaring ambition in the premium electrical car section.

Constructed to the Porsche-designed J1 BEV platform, the manufacturing E-Tron GT shares its underpinnings with the forthcoming Porsche Taycan electrical sports car. Meaning all-wheel push, courtesy of e-motors mounted front and back that pump out a total of 590 horsepower, enough to propel the thickly equipped Audi to 60 miles in under 3.5 minutes, and to a top speed of 149 mph. The advanced 95-kW-hr battery pack–scalloped out to offer footroom for passengers, together with cells stacked under the seats, thereby enabling a floor and center of gravity–delivers about 250 kilometers of range under the WLTP test routine. And, says Audi, the 800-volt onboard charging method may deliver the battery back to full control in approximately 20 minutes.

Few automakers hide shared parts and elements as masterfully as VW Group, and also the E-Tron GT is no exception. The the high-definition displays in the cottage are the items sharp-eyed enthusiasts will be able to select as being shared with the Taycan. Everything else customers see and touch is exceptional to the Audi, the work of design leader Marc Lichte and his staff. Lichte says he’s been engaged in designing 60 cars over his career–40 for both Volkswagen and 20 to get Audi–but not one has excited him as much as forming the E-Tron GT. “This is my masterpiece, even ” he says with a smile as he walks around sheetmetal decked out over big wheels and around the cottage, surfaces including muscle as closely as Dwayne Johnson’s T-shirt. “Michael Mauer in Porsche always does cars like this. I never have a chance. ”

Design highlights include voluptuous rear quarter panels which Lichte says took nine months to finesse: unmarried stampings whose heavy draw–roughly 2 feet in the outer edge of the fender to the inner edge of the back window–was tricky to execute without the metal splitting or warping. The upper surfaces of the front fenders sit a mere handful of inches above the front wheels, rising imperceptibly to creases that run from the bottom of their A-pillars forward towards the corners of this grille and frame a sunken hood. The roofline than that of the svelte A7–emphasizes that the E-Tron GT’s position. And talking of shoulders, the Audi Quattro Infection over the wheels front and back are characterized by means of a chamfer as opposed to a knife-edge. Softer character lines like these are something we ll be seeing more of in future Audis, says Lichte.

Audi insides have a reputation to be special, and also the concept suggests the manufacturing E-Tron GT won’t disappoint. The steering wheel using a flattened top and bottom, will soon probably be on the manufacturing car, albeit with buttons not touchscreens from the spokes, and items that are hinged will replace the touch-actuated door handles. The superbly rendered high-def displays for the virtual cockpit and infotainment systems have been existing VW Group hardware, also already utilized in Porsches, the Bentley Continental GT, along with luxury Audis.

But in which the E-Tron GT’s inside creates its biggest announcement is in its own kind language and advanced use of materials. The leather is synthetic, the seat fabric is made of recycled plastic bottles, along with the floor coverings started life as outdated nylon fishing nets. “We take sustainability ” says Lichte. “And I think it fits using a BEV. The challenge was producing the execution and the stuff complicated. ” Challenge met. The E-Tron GT cottage is your definition of contemporary luxury, a compelling distillation of technologies and fashion.

You ride non. From behind the wheel the E-Tron GT feels like a sports car, near the road, buttoned down, and wrapped you around. However, it’s a genuine four-door, four-seat grand turismo, together with space. Although I had to wiggle my feet past the front seat’s backrest, after settled on the seat there was footroom and enough clearance to my knees with the position set to adapt my 6-foot-2 framework. The normal fixed glass roof ensured adequate headroom. (A lightweight carbon-fiber roofing panel will soon likely be available as an option, together with a sliding glass roof)

I can t tell you much about how the manufacturing E-Tron GT will push. The concept’s oversized tires and wheels and suspension delivered a crashy ride with tons of unwanted body motions from the back axle. Regen was limited–lift , and the idea coasted down like a internal combustion powered car with an automatic transmission–along with the steering felt light. However, all this is stuff that can get repaired as Audi engineers start final calibration of suspension and powertrain hardware and applications.

The one thing that the E-Tron GT won’t believe as though, insist Audi insiders, is a Porsche. Expect an more oily, more quiet ride, and VW Group insiders have already confirmed the powertrain will be tuned to deliver performance that is less than in the Taycan. This much is apparent, though: Stuff just acquired real, Tesla.

The post Audi E-Tron GT Concept First Drive: Look Out, Tesla appeared on MotorTrend.

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