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Audi A1 Sportback Concept

The Audi A1 Sportback concept study uses a ‘plug-in’ hybrid drive to reduce CO2 emissions to just 92 g/km.

The capacity of the lithium-ion batteries makes a range of up to 62 miles possible without use of the petrol engine – with emissions and consumption being reduced by around 30 per cent as a result.

A new version of the hybrid technology shown in the A1 project quattro provides power for the A1 Sportback concept. Under the bonnet is a transversely mounted 1.4-litre TFSI engine developing 150PS and 240Nm, and directing this to the front wheels by means of the S tronic dual-clutch transmission. A 20 kW (27 hp) electric motor integrated in the drive train is able to deliver up to an additional 150 Nm of torque (110.63 lb-ft) when the vehicle is accelerating.

During the boosting phase, i.e. when the TFSI engine and electric motor operate simultaneously, the two power packs deliver strong performance. The front-wheel drive configuration – supplemented by the newly developed, ESP-controlled active front differential lock – ensures optimum power transfer to the road.

The electric motor is also capable of powering the vehicle unaided for zero-emission driving. The capacity of the lithium-ion batteries gives the vehicle a range of up to 62 miles in pure electric mode; the motor can be recharged from any power socket.

The automatic start/stop facility, energy regeneration and phases of purely electrical operation reduce the fuel consumption and emissions of the Audi A1 Sportback concept by almost 30 percent compared to when it is running on the combustion engine alone. Despite its strong performance, with acceleration of 0 to 62mph in 7.9 seconds and a top speed of 124mph, the Audi A1 Sportback concept is nevertheless capable of returning up to 72.4mpg; CO2 emissions are an efficient 92 g/km.

Overrun, or the so-called regeneration phase, is one of the most important elements of this vehicle concept for optimising efficiency, as it transforms the braking energy released during deceleration phases back into electrical energy, instead of it being wasted and released as heat.

The electromechanical steering with speed-sensitive power assistance helps to reduce energy consumption.

The A1 Sportback concept has Audi drive select, which has a default setting in the “efficiency” mode. In this mode, the engine and transmission can lower fuel consumption and emissions.

In the “efficiency” mode the Audi A1 Sportback concept can be used for distances of up to 62 miles in purely electric mode. The combustion engine only cuts in again once battery capacity has dropped to below 20 percent of maximum.

Thanks to the navigation system’s ability to detect differences in altitude along the route, regeneration phases as well as the increase in energy requirements on inclines can be computed before the journey has even started. This makes vehicle operation even more efficient through optimum utilization of the electric motor.