Audi reckons that the brake energy recuperation technology set for the forthcoming e-tron can boost driving range by 30% in day-to-day driving.
The prototypes currently being tested were sent down the famous Pikes Peak Hillclimb course, and managed to add around 19 miles of range during a 19 mile descent.
Naturally, this situation will rarely – if ever – be matched by drivers of the production model, but it showcased the efficiency of the system.
Due to go on sale later this year, the e-tron will produce up to 300 kW, and accelerate from 0-62mph in less than six seconds. A WLTP-calculated range of more than 248 miles on a single charge is expected too, and rapid charging at up to 150 kW will keep recharging times down too (where chargers allow).
Audi says that the e-tron recuperates energy with up to 300 Nm of torque and 220 kW of power – more than 70% of its operating energy input. No series production model has achieved as high a value up to now, according to the German manufacturer.
The Pikes Peak descent is an extreme example of what is possible, but Audi calculates that 30% recuperation is available in real-world driving. In 90% of decelerations, energy is recuperated soley via the electric motors.
This uses three different modes combined: manual coasting recuperation via the shift paddles, automatic coasting recuperation via the predictive efficiency assist, and brake recuperation with transition between electric resistance and hydraulic deceleration.
Due for launch in September this year, the Audi e-tron will compete against models from Tesla, Jaguar, and Mercedes in the long-range premium pure-electric SUV market.