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Audi e-tron GT revealed as four-door 440kW Tesla fighter

By Cameron Kirby, 29 Nov 2018 News

Audi e-tron GT revealed as four-door 440kW Tesla fighter

Fat arches, stonking acceleration, and the Tesla Model S in its sights

JUST a day after revealing it to the world with a lick of camouflage paint, Audi has debuted its e-tron GT concept car at the Los Angeles Auto Show.

The four-door coupe sedan – which looks very similar to an A7 – follows Audi’s e-tron SUV which was launched earlier this year, and is based on the same platform.

Nestled between the concept’s wheels is a 90kWh lithium-ion battery pack, which sends power to two synchronous motors, which are placed on the front and rear axles respectively for fully electric propulsion.

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Audi claims the system puts out a total of 440kW to all four wheels, but it’s the undisclosed torque figure that is going to be the headline act. When Wheels placed a Tesla Model S P100D – the e-tron GT’s natural rival when it makes production – onto a dyno, it cranked out a staggering 1400Nm at the wheels.

We’ve grown wary of outlandish performance figures for concept vehicles, but Audi has remained relatively restrained, claiming 0-100km/h in a healthy 3.5 seconds, and 200km/h in just over 12 seconds. Top Speed? Electronically limited to 240km/h.

While the batteries which provide propulsion mean the e-tron GT is likely to tip the scales at over two tonnes, Audi says it has a comparable centre of gravity to its supercar sibling, the R8. This is thanks to the low placement of the batteries underneath the floor of the cabin in a specially designed cradle.

Audi estimates the e-tron GT is capable of travelling 400km before needing a recharge. However, the concept shares the 800-volt charging system which will debut on the Porsche Taycan, meaning it can be boosted to 80 percent charge (enough for around 320km) in just 20 minutes.

Read next: Charging Ahead: Audi E-Tron at Pikes Peak

Regenerative brakes are standard, and can help turn wasted kinetic energy into extended range, with stopping power force controlled via paddle shifters on the steering wheel.

Visually, it’s not hard to identify the e-tron GT’s Audi lineage, with a silhouette similar to the combustion-powered A7.

But,m being a concept car, Audi’s engineers have widened the arches, and fitted gargantuan 22-inch rims, wrapped in 285/30 rubber.

The inside of the cabin is allegedly completely ‘vegan’, too, with not a single animal-based product present.

Read next: 2018 Geneva Motor Show: Audi E-Tron prototypes hit town

While it’s just a concept for now, Audi has made no bones about putting the sleek sedan into production as a follow-up to the e-tron SUV.

Slated for production in 2020, and set to share a platform with the Porsche Taycan, Audi has stated the e-tron GT will be the sportiest electric vehicle it will offer, effectively ruling out a return of the stillborn battery-powered R8 variant.

Speaking to Australian media in Berlin earlier this year, Peter Oberndorfer, Audi’s Head of Product and Technology Communications, said: “We will have very sporty battery electric cars.”

“With electricity you will have no shortage of power and acceleration, which fits surprisingly well for sporty cars,” he said.

“It is a four-door car, which won’t be a successor to the R8. It will be a very sporty four-door car, and we will have very sporty electric cars in our line-up.”