Audi has surprised the world with their first ever concept car unveiling at the Monterey Car Week. The car being debuted is the Audi PB18 e-tron, a high-performance car that the German automaker says is a “radical vision for the high-performance sports car of tomorrow.” It’s obvious to see that they planned this car’s Monterey unveiling ahead of time when you learn that the “PB” in PB18 stands for Pebble Beach. The “18” refers to its close relationship with the Audi R18 e-tron LMP1 race car.
Powering the car are three electric motors – one in the front and two in the rear. The one up front delivers 150 kW of power, while the pair in the back pushes out 350 kW. That results in a total output of 500 kW, which equates to about 670.5 horsepower. There’s also 612.2 lb-ft of torque that the driver can experience in a no time at all. All of this results in a 0 to 62 mph time of just over 2 seconds.
However, Audi didn’t design this car just for racing. When daily driving the PB18 e-tron, the driver can limit the maximum speed of the car. This results in better range and no fear of getting the urge to drive like you’re on the track. Additionally, the electric motors can have their energy restored through regenerative braking technology. All of the power gets routed back to the liquid-cooled, solid-state battery that can hold 95 kWh. When fully charged, this battery will provide a range of over 310 miles. And in a world of “fast charging” tech, Audi says the battery can be fully recharged in 15 minutes.
When looking at the images of the car, you may realize that it seems like a single-seater car with a driver’s seat positioned smack dab in the middle of the cockpit. Here’s where a bit of brilliant engineering comes into play. The driver is always sitting in a monocoque that holds the seat and instrument cluster. When alone, the driver can be positioned in the center of the cabin. If they need to include a passenger, the monocoque (seat and instrument cluster included) can be moved over to make room for an additional seat. Essentially, the PB18 e-tron is both a single and two-passenger car at any given time.[one-half-first] [/one-half]
The Audi PB18 e-tron concept car sure looks close to a production model, if you ask me. This could very well be a sign of a real car that will be added to their lineup in the near future. Keep your eyes open and check back with us for more news as it breaks.