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Monday, March 1, 2010

Audi A1 e-tron series hybrid to use Wankel rotary range extender

Audi has confirmed it will put the Audi A1 e-tron electric car into production in 2012.

The concept car, which will be unveiled at the Geneva motor show on Tuesday, has an all-electric range of more than 31 miles in city traffic, which can be extended to 124 miles.

The lithium ion battery pack has a capacity of 12 kilowatt-hours, which is claimed to provide about 30 miles of range on a charge. Unlike the 1,000+ pound pack in the original e-tron concept, this unit weighs in at just 330 pounds. The electric motor provides a standard output of 45 kW or 61 horsepower, though peak power of 75 kW or 102 hp is available in short bursts and keeps the car's 0-62 mile-per-hour time around 10 seconds. The motor and all of the power electronics reside in the car's front where the internal combustion powerplant of a conventional A1 would normally be found.

The Wankel weighs in at just 154 lbs and displaces just 254 cc of volume in its single rotor. The whole unit is small enough to sit below the cargo floor of the A1. Running at a constant 5,000 rpm, the rotary motor can extend the A1 e-tron's range to 130 miles. Why not longer? The fuel tank holds only 3.17 gallons. With the Wankel running, Audi says the A1 e-tron will return about 124 miles per gallon U.S.

The Audi A1 e-tron electric car is being displayed to highlight Audi's growing plans to introduce electric cars "where it is appropriate for specific model lines and markets".

Rupert Stadler, Audi chairman, said: "In future our customers will be able to choose from an increasingly broad range of driveline technologies. To accompany our high-efficiency TDI and FSI engines, we shall offer electric power in the best possible forms for a wide range of mobility needs. The hybrid driveline will be followed by all-electric vehicles.

"Just as "quattro" has become a synonym for all-wheel drive, so "e-tron" is to be the Audi brand name for electric mobility."

Audi also confirmed it is continuing to invest in fuel cell and hydrogen technology.
Audi is also display an Audi A8 hybrid concept car, with the production model going on sale in 2011. It is rated as emitting 144g/km of CO2 and averaging 46mpg.

The concept car has two power units - a 2.0 TFSI engine and the electric motor. They have a combined output of 242bhp and 354lb ft of torque. The power units can operate separately or together. In electric mode the car has a top speed of 40mph and range of 1.2miles.

In addition, Audi has confirmed the Audi Q5 hybrid will go on sale in 2010, powered by a petrol engine and electric motor.

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Anonymous said...

Wankel rotor engine is special for this purpose.
Very good choice from Audi.

Sérgio Werneck de Figueiredo
Petrópolis RJ Brazil

Anonymous said...

The last 45 years of MAZDA time spent in work and research on rotor Wankel engineering, after all, were not in vain.
His Wankel rotary engines with its 9,500 rpm, coupled to a generator, will be a very good zero carbon emission option; The new GENESIS engines are also powered by hydrogen direct injection.

Sérgio Werneck de Figueiredo
Petrópolis RJ Brazil

John said...

The Wankel is the natural choice for range extending applications. It can run at its most efficient higher speed and still be smooth, quiet with excellent fuel efficiency.

The small size is a great bonus. I hope these cars do have the Wankel range extenders fitted as standard and are not just concept cars to gain attention in shows.

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