We’ve had it on good word that something big in regard to Frankfurt would be dropping this week (though not the A8/S8 as that’ll be August 21). We’ve also had it on pretty good word that a new iteration of the Audi quattro Concept may be revealed in Frankfurt. Well, it appears the embargo for such news breaks tonight and that news (thanks AutoZeitung) is the 700-hp Audi quattro Sport e-tron Concept as illustrated by these official Audi Design Team drawings.
So here’s the rundown. First and foremost, use of the “e-tron” name is a bit of a surprise, but is also applicable given the car is very surprisingly a hybrid. Given recent and impending launches of super exotic hybrids like the Porsche 918 Spyder and BMW i8, it is perhaps not so much of a surprise given the direction of the industry and specifically some of Audi’s fiercest competitors. That said, Audi’s dropped this latest e-tron with forceful authority, with 92 hp more than the Porsche and nearly double the BMW’s 362 hp. It’s also packaged this beast of a drivetrain in a most iconic Audi form – a box flared, slope-backed, front-engine coupe.
In comparison to BMW’s 1.5-liter 3-cylinder hybrid supercar, Audi has instead gone with the same twin-turbo 4.0 TFSI V8 from the new RS 6 and RS 7 models, though paired it with an electric hybrid drivetrain to boost power even further. Thusly boosted, the dual power “sources” combine to give this low and wide sports coupe a whopping 700 hp.
Not surprisingly, the chassis is Audi’s latest MLB-evo, weighing in at 1700 kg (3,748 lbs.) and about 4.5 meters (177 inches est.) long. That’s about 5 inches shorter in length than an Audi S5 and only 50 lbs. heavier than an M3 given the car sports a 4.0 TFSI, electric motors and batteries. It’ll knock down 0-62 mph (0-100 km/h) in just three seconds and its top speed is expected to be over 330 km/h (205 mph).
On the off chance the driver of the Audi quattro Sport e-tron is feeling frugal, there is a pure electric mode as well. In that case the car can travel up to 35 km (21.7 miles) on pure electric power and with zero emissions. Likely a variant sans all the heavy electric drivetrain and ancillary equipment could also be built with significant weight savings and likely equal performance.
This latest concept marks a significant change from the previous Audi quattro Concept. While the general shape appears to be quite similar, the scope and approach do not. The first car utilized a longitudinally-mounted 2.5 TFSI turbocharged 5-cylinder much like the original quattro and Sport quattro but sourced from the TT RS. While smaller in displacement, it presented packaging issues as it was also longer than Audi’s V10 found in the R8 and previously in the S6/S8/RS 6. Audi’s move to the 4.0 TFSI didn’t just make room for the hybrid drivetrain, it also likely made room for more of a production reality.
The Audi quattro Sport e-tron concept is expected to bow at the Frankfurt IAA on September 10. Expect an initial press release and possibly more teaser drawings by tomorrow. Likely photos and further information will not follow until September 10 or perhaps on September 9 at a likely Volkswagen Group reveal night.
Find more information (in German) and original drawings over at AutoZeitung HERE.
UPDATE: With the morning came a few more drawings also available in higher resolution. We’ve added all of this to our photo gallery associated with this story. Interestingly, Audi released no official press copy with the images so we’re still operating on the assumption that the information surrounding the concept from the AutoZeitung report is correct, but we feel it worth mentioning that this intel has not yet come from Audi directly.