Estate cars lend themselves very well to being electric, having the wheelbase within which to house batteries and powertrain, but without the weight and height compromise that SUVs bring with them. Audi’s Avant models are among the best in type out there, and with the A6 Avant e-tron concept, it is essentially showing a production-ready model.
It’s a compelling one too, based on the same PPE platform A6 e-tron Sportback concept and forthcoming models such as an electric Porsche Macan and next-gen Audi Q5 e-tron. It also benefits from Audi’s tried-and-tested e-tron tech and styling that blends traditional Avant and e-tron in an attractive package.
The Audi A6 Avant e-tron shares a fair amount in common with the e-tron GT quattro. Audi is promising several different power levels, but at the top end power comes from two electric motors – one on each axle – and will enable the A6 Avant e-tron to hit 62mph in less than four seconds. Even an entry-level version with rear-wheel drive will do the sprint ‘in less than seven seconds’.
For the Concept, Audi has endowed the car with a dual motor setup with 469bhp and 590lb-ft in total, which is the same as the standard e-tron GT. Battery capacity sits at 100kWh, housed between the two axles in the car’s long wheelbase for optimal balance. A five-link front axle and multilink rear alongside air suspension with adaptive dampers helps keep the heft in check.
As with Audi’s e-tron GT, the A6 Avant e-tron runs 800 volt electronic architecture meaning impressively high charging speeds of up to 270kW can be utilised. This adds around 186 miles in just ten minutes, whilst a five to 80 per cent charge can be delivered in just 25 minutes. Depending on the model spec, a maximum range of 435 miles should be possible, essentially making it a no compromise car versus a petrol or diesel equivalent.
Audi’s A6 Avant e-tron is not a small car by any stretch of the imagination. At 4960mm long, 1960mm wide and 1440mm tall its footprint isn’t far off that of a Q7 SUV. God knows how big an A8 e-tron will be as and when Audi makes one…
Despite its prodigious size, the A6 Avant has been designed with aerodynamics at the forefront and achieves a Cd value of just 0.24, which is very slippery indeed for an estate. In profile, the car’s gently sloping roofline with a slanted D-pillar is all part of this streamlining. Cameras replace external mirrors which smooth the car’s profile and are also aerodynamically efficient.
Up-front, an enclosed single frame grille sits above deep air intakes which cool the powertrain, battery and brakes. Digital Matrix LED and digital OLED tech in the headlights enables them to shape and bend light adaptively. Welcome light or even warning signals can be projected onto the ground by the car’s door lights, whilst LED projectors at the corners of the car can also project things like turn signals onto the ground.
At the rear, a spoiler and diffuser help with aerodynamic optimisation.
As for the interior, Audi is yet to give much away, but assume the A6 Avant e-tron will be loaded with the brand’s latest digital cockpit and connectivity.
There’s no official word on either at the moment, but an on-sale date in 2024 seems likely.
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