2021 Audi e-tron GT performance details

Audi has ramped up the information about its all-new RS e-tron GT flagship Gran Turismo road car.

With a World Premiere expected early next year and deliveries to begin by next summer, Audi is anxious to spread the word about the upcoming all-electric vehicle.

2021 Audi e-tron GT driving in Rhodes GreeceWhile components are shared with the Porsche Taycan, Audi engineers stressed the vehicles are calibrated and tuned differently, each to suit the attributes of their core customers.

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Apparently the RS e-tron GT will provide up to 640 HP with an over-boost feature from the two onboard electric motors. Maximum torque remains the same at 830 Nm or 612 lb-ft. While we know the top speed of the RS e-tron GT will be limited to 250 kms/hr, all Audi will say about acceleration at this time, is its below 3.5 seconds from 0-100 kms/hr.

Audi highlights the fact this will be the first RS vehicle with a fully electrical power-train. It will be used as a template to shape the future of premium mobility.

The current Covid pandemic has created logistical problems for car companies looking to get the word out on new vehicles being introduced. Audi held an event on the island of Rhodes for European journalists and featured a special test driver to keep us virtual participants in the loop. Lucas di Grassi, Formula E driver and former series world champion took remote participants through the vehicles paces. In quarter mile testing, Lucas remarked that the vehicle surpassed 200 kms/hr, or 124 miles per hour. That is serious speed for a road legal car.

2021 Audi e-tron GT Lucas di Grassi

Lucas di Grassi, Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler’s Formula E driver.

On twisty mountain roads, even with the active air suspension set to comfort, the RS e-tron GT was able to carve through the sinewy ribbons of asphalt and still isolate the occupants from feeling potholes and rough sections. The standard four wheel steering proved to be a valuable addition along with the perfect 50/50 weight balance of the car.

The RS e-tron GT is propelled by two motors, a 335 kW unit at the rear axle and a 175 kW unit at the front. Yes, this electric vehicle from Audi also features Quattro all wheel drive. Powering the motors is a 83.7 kWh battery mounted on-top of a flat panel undercarriage to keep the centre of gravity low. The battery consists of 396 pouch cells in 33 modules.

The heating and cooling systems of these high performance vehicles requires new technology and engineering prowess. A valve controlled, adjustable cooling circuit, cools both batteries and motors, while utilizing a heat pump to transfer heat to the passenger cabin as needed.

Cooling the batteries is paramount to maintaining battery durability and longer life. One engineer explained that with a rapid 270 kW charging capability, that is equal to the same amount of energy flow from driving 250-260 kms/hr.

Braking onboard the RS e-tron GT has been engineered to deal with the unlikely combination of weight, power and speed. Three levels of braking performance will be offered. The test vehicles were equipped with the top of the line ceramic braking system which allows for maximum stopping power and also the least amount of additional weight. The entry level braking is a traditional cast iron set up. An intermediate system of surface coated brake discs, was engineered specifically for EV applications. Overall, the conventional hydraulic braking system has been augmented with an electric brake boost system to assist in seamlessly blending the combination of friction and regenerative braking.

While the world waits to see what the production models will look like, we can report that the RS e-tron GT will be offered with optional wheel sizes of 21, 20 and 19 inches. Obviously the 21 inch models look best, however the vehicle is best optimized for range using the 20 inch wheel and is lightest with the 19 inch units. TO further lessen weight and the drive the centre of gravity even lower for better handling, a carbon fibre roof panel will also be offered.