It has been a bumper few days for brand spanking new electrical car reveals. Historically the time of the New York Worldwide Auto Present, final week noticed new battery EVs from Audi, Mazda, and Mercedes-EQ. This coming week, the Shanghai Auto Present will happen in corporeal type, and Audi has introduced alongside one thing particular. It is referred to as the A6 e-tron idea, however do not let the “idea” bit idiot you; when the precise A6 e-tron arrives in late 2022, it’s going to look loads just like the automotive you see within the gallery above.
A brand new EV platform
Audi and its company siblings inside Volkswagen Group have made environment friendly use of extremely versatile car architectures, the place a standard set of parts is used to create a variety of various autos. When dieselgate pressured VW Group to desert that gasoline in favor of electrification as a approach to meet robust European local weather rules, it put Audi in command of creating a substitute for the MLB Evo structure that Audi, Porsche, Bentley, and Lamborghini have used to make vehicles and SUVs.
The brand new platform is named PPE—Premium Platform Electrical—and the brand new A6 e-tron might be one of many first BEVs to utilize it. (That is along with the brand new MEB structure for smaller BEVs in-built a lot larger quantity.) In actual fact, the A6 e-tron will not be the primary PPE-derived BEVs to achieve market; late 2022 ought to see the arrival of an electrical substitute for the Porsche Macan crossover, in addition to a brand new Audi Q6 SUV, however we haven’t any extra particulars to share about these two at the moment.
Just like the Porsche Taycan and Audi e-tron GT (each of which use a platform referred to as J1), the A6 e-tron makes use of an 800 V electrical structure that permits it to DC quick cost at as much as 270 kW. And we’re informed it ought to have no less than 435 miles (700 km) of vary when examined beneath Europe’s WLTP schema, courtesy of a 100 kWh lithium-ion battery pack. Audi informed Ars that this pack is smaller and higher packaged than the one within the e-tron SUV, enabling sedan physique kinds just like the A6 idea with out compromising inside area.
PPE is designed to permit for single-motor (rear-wheel drive) powertrains in addition to dual-motor (all-wheel drive) layouts. The A6 e-tron idea makes use of the latter, with a mixed output of 350 kW (469 hp) and 800 Nm (590 lb-ft).
Why is not it referred to as the A7 e-tron?
In Audi’s present nomenclature, an A6 is a daily sedan, and an A7 is the fastback spinoff, which sacrifices a little rear headroom for a lot of style. This idea is kind of clearly a fastback, which makes complete sense, because the sloping rear hatch and cut-off tail end in decrease drag—on this case a extremely respectable drag coefficient (Cd) of 0.22. So why did Audi name it an A6 e-tron and never an A7 Sportback e-tron?
“The A6 mannequin line has a legacy beginning with the Audi 100, and the A7 is a spinoff of that,” in accordance with an Audi consultant, and so it is chosen to go along with the A6 identify to attract a extra direct hyperlink with the mannequin that helped construct the corporate.
The manufacturing model of the A6 e-tron—full with options lacking from this idea, like purposeful door handles and an precise inside—is scheduled to be unveiled on the finish of 2022, with deliveries starting in early 2023.
Itemizing picture by Audi