LA Auto Show: Audi Reveals a Fully Functional Concept Hybrid

This was the first car I saw when I entered the show. I was transfixed by its stunning masculine lines. When the Audi rep told me it also boasts a 3.0L V-6 TDI clean diesel motor as well as two 44hp electric motors in the front wheels, I was even more impressed. Here’s a concept car which actually delivers real power as well as a shocking 107mpg (when driven conservatively, as reported by Green Car Journal’s Ron Cogan in their Fall 2011 paper issue.) Audi invited Cogan to take the e-tron Spyder for a spin on some of my favorite canyon roads, in Malibu, and he had great things to say about the experience.

In their press launch last night, Audi presented a a wide array of high performance cars including the A3 e-tron. The A3 is billed as a solid all-around car, powered by a 60kW permanent magnet synchronous motor spinning at up to 16,000 rpm. The lithium-ion battery pack is water-cooled and located in the floor like other high-performance EV’s.

Audi claims the A3 e-tron technology platform has a range of about 87 miles from full charge. It will do 0-60 in 5.3 seconds and top speed is governed at 90 mph, barely enough to keep pace when traffic is actually moving in LA. But, until batteries have what it takes to get us farther faster, some of us will simply have to be governed. As I discovered riding the Zero S at top speed until it was done.

Susanna Schick

Susanna is passionate about anything fast and electric. As long as it's only got two wheels. She covers electric motorcycle racing events, test rides electric motorcycles, and interviews industry leaders. Occasionally she deigns to cover automobile events in Los Angeles for us as well. However, she dreams of a day when Los Angeles' streets resemble the two-wheeled paradise she discovered living in Barcelona and will not rest until she's converted the masses to two-wheeled bliss.