Audi is starting out toward future mobility with the A3 Sportback e-tron, the brand’s first plug-in hybrid model. It can cover up to 50 kilometers (31.1 mi) in pure electric mode, and its TFSI engine offers an additional 890 kilometers (553.0 mi) of range. The five-door compact, whose 1.4 TFSI engine and electric motor produce a system output of 150 kW (204 hp), is a sporty all-arounder and perfect for everyday driving.
Sporty power, groundbreaking efficiency, extremely fun to drive and uncompromising everyday utility – the A3 Sportback e-tron offers all the strengths of a typical Audi. Its drivetrain comprises a 1.4 TFSI engine with 110 kW (150 hp), a 75 kW electric motor and a newly developed six-speed S tronic with an integrated electric motor. System output is 150 kW (204 hp); maximum system torque is 350 Nm (258.1 lb-ft). The battery has a capacity of 8.8 kWh and can be charged in somewhat more than two hours from an industrial outlet. A versatile charging system is standard. A smartphone app provides for extremely easy remote charging and precooling/preheating.
The Audi A3 Sportback e-tron accelerates to 100 km/h (62.1 mph) in 7.6 seconds and has a top speed of 222 km/h (137.9 mph). In purely electric mode, top speed is limited to 130 km/h (80.8 mph) Fuel consumption according to the ECE standard for plug-in hybrid vehicles is just 1.5 liters of fuel per 100 kilometers (156.8 US mpg) – corresponding to CO2 emissions of 35 grams per kilometer (56.3 g/mi). The compact five-door can cover 50 kilometers (31.1 mi) on electricity alone, with gasoline operation providing an additional 890 kilometers (553.0 mi).
The hybrid management system intelligently controls the interaction of the drive systems. It offers the driver numerous functions, including boost, in which the engine and motor actively work together, and recuperation, which feeds the automobile’s kinetic energy back into the battery. In contrast to some of its competitors, the Audi A3 Sportback e-tron is not an either-or concept, but a “both… and…” car that is up to any automotive task.
Thanks to systematic lightweight design, the five-door car has a curb weight (without driver) of just 1,540 kg (3,395.1 lb), yet offers space for five occupants and plenty of luggage. It comes with a generous list of standard equipment, and Audi offers numerous high-end solutions with the optional assistance and infotainment systems. The compact plug-in hybrid has a base price in Germany of 37,900 euros.
The Audi A3 Sportback e-tron immediately moves to the head of its class. Audi is convinced that plug-in hybrid automobiles represent the best solution for the electrification of mobility in the medium term. Additional models in the mid-size and full-size ranges will follow quickly.