All-electric Audi A2

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More details have been released about the electric Audi A2
, including that it will weight just 1,150 kg, and have a range of 124 miles.

The A2 is an all-electric four-seat concept which has multi-material hybrid construction. The lithium ion battery-powered electric motor is mounted within a sandwich floor and delivers 116 PS and 270 Nm, giving a 9.3-second 0-62 mph time and a governed 93 mph top speed.

Advanced Audi ultra-lightweight construction techniques limit the weight of this latest technology study to just 1,150 kg. For the first time it unites hybrid multimaterial construction, in which very different materials are combined with one another, with the Audi Space Frame (ASF) construction principle. The superstructure is made largely from aluminium, complemented by add-on parts in Carbon Fibre-Reinforced Polymer (CFRP). The 18-inch alloy wheels also shave off around 2 kg each compared with conventional equivalents thanks to cladding technology which greatly reduces the amount of material used.

The Audi A2 concept is a purely electric vehicle. A lithium-ion battery mounted in its sandwich floor stores 31 kWh of energy, 24 kWh of which is usable. The electric motor is transversely mounted in the front, and delivers 116 PS of peak power (80 PS continuous) and 270 Nm of torque (160 Nm continuous) to the front wheels via a single-speed transmission.

This power output gives a 0-62 mph acceleration time of 9.3 seconds and a top speed of 93 mph, which is electronically limited to conserve driving range, which is 124 miles according to the European driving cycle test.

It takes around 1.5 hours to fully recharge the battery with 400 volt three-phase current and approximately four hours with 230 volt household current. The Audi A2 concept is also designed for the new contactless charging technology (Audi Wireless Charging).

The charging socket and the cooling water connection are concealed at the front of the car behind the upper portion of the single frame grille. The lower section of the grille acts as an air inlet, and incorporates highly efficient cooling elements made of graphite foam. The lightweight mineral is an excellent conductor of heat from the water to the ambient air. Eight blocks with six graphite elements each are located in the central air inlet.

McPherson strut front suspension and a torsion beam rear axle provide agile handling with the help of steering and brake systems which are purely electric (steer-by-wire and brake-by-wire), requiring no mechanical or hydraulic connection to the steering wheel or the pedals, respectively.

The A2 concept can also cruise ‘semi-autonomously’, a benefit designed specifically to take some of the strain out of driving in slow-moving traffic. Two large inward-pointing touch-sensitive pads are used to control all the car’s key operating functions bar the turn indicators and the windscreen wipers, and if both these touch pads are touched simultaneously the car enters this ‘semi-autonomous’ mode. In this mode, the driver can manually intervene and regain full control of the vehicle at all times, as is currently the case with the Adaptive Cruise Control with stop & go function on which the new technology is based.

Another highlight of the A2 concept is the matrix beam LED headlights. An entire bundle of small light-emitting diodes arranged one above the other produce the low beam and high beam light. Microreflectors enable the precise positioning of the light. The LEDs can be switched on and off independently to illuminate the road perfectly in any situation. Numerous mini-LEDs set in the lower section of the headlight produce the daytime running light.

The adaptive tail lights also use matrix beam technology. The system uses a sensor to detect how good visibility is and adjusts the brightness accordingly.

Five laser diodes produce the rear fog light. When visibility is good, their light is invisible. In the fog or rain, however, it strikes the water particles in the air and becomes clearly visible as a floating triangle.

Each flank of the Audi A2 concept is also embellished by a band of light that connects the headlights with the tail lights. These Audi dynamic lights are produced using light-emitting diodes and light guides. When in standby-mode, the several centimetre-wide band is coloured black, but when the holder of the key to the Audi A2 concept approaches, it lights up blue and intensifies illumination of the door handles. These are inset into the band and extend when the driver swipes a hand over them.

The dynamic light shines bright orange when the A2 concept is driving. It pulses on the corresponding side when indicating a turn, and when braking, a red pulse of light runs along the flank as a warning for other road users.

The Audi A2 will be on show at Frankfurt.