- Under six secs to 100km/h, 400km range possible
- Fast charging (150kW points) to 80% in 30 minutes
- Virtual door mirrors, Matrix LED lighting
LONDON, England – Audi’s e-tron Launch special edition due out in the UK in early 2019 will total only 30 units and come with two high-definition cameras instead of external mirrors.
That means all-weather visibility, freeway safety and cleaner aerodynamics, just part of the technological ingenuity behind every facet of Audi’s first fully electric model which will retail in the UK from the equivalent (Dec 2018) of about R1.25-million.
Taking the already comprehensively equipped standard e-tron as its basis, the Launch Edition slots in above at about R1.44-million thanks to the addition of platinum-look 21” Audi Sport alloy wheel rims (20” on the stanard model), the headlights are a step up from LED to even more intelligent Matrix LED technology which enables the diversion of the light beam around surrounding traffic.
SPECIAL TUNNEL VISION
The conventional external mirrors make way for the already-mentioned camera-based units transmitting images of the e-tron’s surroundings to two interior displays. They reduce the overall width of the car by 15cm and have demisters/heaters.
The cameras control automatically the brightness of the image in accordance with the surroundings – such as driving through a tunnel, adapting for motorway driving, turning and parking. Proximity sensors within the driver’s display allow various settings to be adjusted by touch by placing a finger closer to the surface, including the field of vision and the degree of zoom.
The front passenger mirror can also be adjusted by the relevant display.
The e-tron Launch Edition also has a black styling pack taking in the singleframe grille surround, window cappings and privacy glass extending rearwards from the B-pillar.
The cabin has a glass roof, illuminating door sills, brushed aluminium inlays and an upholstery upgrade to special leather upholstery – ”making,” Audi says, ”the occupants even more comfortable while enjoying the near-silent progress with the e-tron’s two powerful electric motors”.
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”Comprehensive comfort features,” its maker adds, ”include high-quality materials and exceptional workmanship with access to exceptional infotainment features through two large MMI touchscreens with haptic feedback and voice control.
”The Launch Edition adds a fully digital virtual cockpit, Audi Smartphone interface, wireless charging, MMI satnav and internet-based infotainment services.”
The Launch Edition’s list of ”convenience” includes powered steering-wheel adjustment, cruise control, camera-based roadsign recognition, and a 360-degree camera to help with constrained parking.
Power supply comes from a 95kWh, 36-cell battery slung under the cabin. It feeds two electric motors (one on each axle) and chargeable at fast-charge stations with direct current (DC) at up to 150kW – a first for a series-production and able to recharge to 80% in a half-hour.
The motors can deliver 300kW, facilitating 5.7sec to 100km/h, acceleration, top speed of 200km/h and a driving range of at least 400km.
When operating in unison, they become a sophisticated all-wheel-drive system that can manage the distribution of the 664Nm of torque between the two axles to, Audi says, ”preserve the sense of calm and refinement that makes travel in the e-tron such a special experience”.
…and so to another special edition
Prospective e-tron buyers who’ve taken advantage of the Audi UK deposit scheme granting priority ordering access ahead of the official 2019 on-sale date will be given first refusal on a limited edition model – the e-tron Edition 1 – of which only 30 will be available in the UK.
The cars will have an even more exceptional specification that includes the glass roof, four-zone electronic aircon, control, a Bang & Olufsen Premium Sound System ,and acoustic glazing.
Exclusive visual styling highlights will range from the Antigua blue metallic paint, orange brake calipers and 21” turbine-design alloy wheel rims to Audi beam incorporating an Edition 1 logo and aluminium exterior elements.