Audi powers ahead with PHEVs, poo-poos pure EVs

Audi plans to have a plug-in hybrid version of each of its “key models” by 2020, reiterated Board Member for Technical Development Ulrich Hackenberg.

Speaking at the launch of the A3 Sportback e-tron, Hackenberg said Audi had decided to prioritize plug-in hybrids because “they meet all of our customers’ expectations.”

He said that Audi is developing two PHEV families. Future models based on the MQB platform will be offered with a plug-in hybrid powertrain like that of the A3 e-tron, which has an electric motor, a transversely mounted 1.4 TFSI gas engine and a six-speed dual-clutch automatic gearbox. Larger Audi models will use a similar system, but will be based on the new MLB-Evo platform, with a longitudinally mounted engine.

A3 Sportback e-tron 2

The first PHEV from the company, the A3 Sportback e-tron, is now available to order for customers in Europe. Approximately 410 Audi dealers in Europe are selling the plug-in at a base price of 37,900 euros in the German market (about $50,000 US).

SEE ALSO: Audi plans to offer full range of e-trons – with wireless charging?

Audi is in no hurry to develop pure EVs, said CEO Rupert Stadler. “We have tested the technology, but we have always been clear that, from a customer’s point-of-view, plug-in hybrid technology is best. Plug-in technology gives efficiency and it gives range. I’ve spoken to Tesla customers, and they say that if the plug-in Audi Q7 was available that is the car they would choose. We are confident we have chosen the right path – an electric car that lives only in the showroom does nothing for the CO2 agenda. We want to build cars that sell.”

 

Source: AudiAutoCar, What Car?

  • http://www.pbconsultinginc.com Stephen Bieda

    “PHEVs meet all of our customer’s expectations” — A rather presumptuous statement. IMHO few informed and experienced EV drivers would prefer a PHEV over a BEV. Most EV friends I know love their PHEVs but would still prefer a BEV that had a little better range. Other purists would never consider buying a PHEV save in a larger platform vehicle like a pickup, full size SUN or full sized van.