Audi A3 e-tron-09

Earlier this week, you saw the Audi RS Q3 (the first ever RS SUV) that will debut at the upcoming Geneva show, now here’s a fellow debutant from the opposite end of the scale – the Audi A3 e-tron plug-in hybrid.

Opposite ends in philosophy, not performance, because the A3 e-tron is no green tortoise. With 204 hp of system power and 350 Nm of torque at disposal, the plug-in hybrid sprints from 0 to 100 km/h in 7.6 seconds on its way to a top speed of 222 km/h.

According to the ECE standard for plug-in hybrids, the five-door hatchback consumes on average just 1.5 litres of fuel per 100 km, which corresponds to CO2 emissions of just 35 g/km. In electric mode, the Audi A3 e-tron reaches a top speed of 130 km/h and has a maximum range of 50 km. That’s KL to Rawang, with some spare kms in the tank – useful!

Audi A3 e-tron-02

The combustion engine is a modified 1.4 TFSI producing 150 hp, and a clutch links the TFSI to a 75 kW electric motor. The disc-shaped motor is integrated into a newly designed six-speed e-S tronic, which transfers the power to the front wheels. The electric motor delivers peak torque from start to around 2,000 rpm, and the TFSI’s maximum pulling power is available from 1,750 to 4,000 rpm.

The A3 e-tron can be driven with just the combustion engine, just the electric drive or in hybrid mode. The driver can choose to have both powerplants active at the same time (“boosting”), and when he/she lets up on the accelerator, they both deactivate temporarily (“gliding”). This way, motor braking torque is eliminated and efficiency increases, says Audi.

It’s not yet in production, but Audi says that the A3 e-tron “will provide a realistic glimpse into the future of mobility as Audi is planning it.” The electrification of the drivetrain plays a deciding role in the strategy of the brand, it adds, so expect such a powertrain from the four rings brand in the near future.