All-electric Audi sets Ring record
AUDI CIRCUIT BREAKER:The Audi R8 e-tron has set a world record for a production vehicle with an electric drive system on the Nurburgring Nordschleife – the toughest test track in the world.
The all-electric Audi R8 e-tron has set a world record on the Nurburgring Nordschleife - regarded as the toughest test track in the world. Racing driver Markus Winkelhock piloted the high-performance sports car around the challenging 12.29km track in 8min 09.099sec.
This achievement is yet another marker in Audi’s history, following overall wins at the 24-hour races at the Nurburgring and Le Mans.
Michael Dick, Audi AG board member for technical development said the record drive confirmed they are on the right track. “The e-tron has given a magnificent demonstration of its potential on the toughest race track in the world.”
Compared to the current record lap driven by Gumpert Apollo Sport, a production car with a conventional combustion engine, the e-tron’s time is quite impressive.
The drive system of the e-tron was identical to that of the road-going model which will enter production towards the end of 2012.
The car’s electric motors generate a combined output of 280kW and 820Nm. The e-tron accelerates from zero to 100km/h in 4.6 seconds. Its top speed is normally limited to 124km/h but 249km/h was approved for the record-setting lap.
The rechargeable lithium-ion battery stores 49 KWh of energy – enough for about 130km and is recharged by energy recovery during coasting and braking. Its light body is primarily aluminium, along with CFRP components; this is the main reason why the high-performance sports car weighs only 1780 kg, despite the large battery.
In an attempt to further emphasise the capability of its drive technology, Audi has set another record on the Nordschleife, in addition to the single-lap record time. Winkelhock drove two fast laps in a second R8 e-tron, limited to 199km/h, and made it well under the nine-minute threshold.
"The record drives were a fantastic experience for me, Of course, the R8 e-tron is a production car, not a racing car with the assistance of aerodynamics. But with its low centre of gravity and rear-biased weight distribution, it brings with it a lot of sporty qualities. The torque with which the electric motors propel the car uphill beats everything that I know – even if they make hardly any noise in the process, which at the start was really a completely new experience for me.”
Dick, after winning the 24-hour race at the Nürburgring in May with the Audi R8 LMS ultra, as well as succeeding at the 24 Hours of Le Mans with the Audi R18 e-tron Quattro, boasts that they are taking the lead in the industry of electric vehicles. “Within just a few weeks we’ve taken on some big challenges and in the process we’ve shown that we are at the forefront with all of our drive concepts.”