Previously citing the car’s 200 kilometre (124m) range as a stumbling block, insiders at Ingolstadt are now claiming that advances in lithium-ion battery technology featuring an alternative chemical process has increased that figure to almost 400 kilometres. Audi’s new head, Ulrich Hackenberg, who was responsible for such Volkswagen vehicles as the XL1, e-Up and e-Golf sees the r8 e-tron as a halo model for the brand.
In its current incarnation the R8 e-tron utilizes a A 49 KWh lithium-ion battery to feed electric motors generating a total output of 230 kW (308 hp) and 820 Nm of torque. At 1,780 kg it’s 220 kg heavier than the R8 V8, but performance is still impressive, with 100 km/h (62 mph) happening in just 4.6 seconds, while top speed is governed to 200 km/h (124 mph). It also lapped the fabled Nurburgring in just 8:09.099 minutes, securing the record for a electric production car.
The e-tron is expected to be added to the next-generation R8 range towards the end of next year along with its more conventional petrol-powered counterparts.