Tuesday 10th April 2018.

AUDI E-TRON VISION GT

  • When is a concept, not a concept? When is vapourware, not vapourware? The Audi e-tron Vision Gran Turismo was developed for virtual races on PS4, but now Audi is making the car a reality in conjunction with Formula E. You’ll first see it with the race in Rome this Saturday, April 14, deployed as a race taxi.
  • Electric Vehicle News reports: “The customers and guests of the brand with the four rings will be able to experience Formula E’s city circuits as passengers in the Audi e-tron Vision Gran Turismo starting at the race in Rome (April 14). Employees at Audi’s pre-production center developed and produced this one-of-a-kind car within the space of just eleven months based on the example of the Audi e-tron Vision Gran Turismo from the “Gran Turismo” PlayStation game. The Audi e-tron Vision Gran Turismo has permanent all-wheel drive as well, the fully electric e-tron quattro all-wheel drive with variable power distribution. Three electric motors, each with output of 200 kW, propel the concept car. Two electric motors drive the rear axle and the third one the front axle, using individual components from the future Audi e-tron. System output is 600 kW (815 hp). With a curb weight of 1,450 kilograms the electric race car has a power to weight ratio of 1.78 kilo­grams per horsepower with ideal 50:50 percent weight distribution between the front and the rear axle. The Audi e-tron Vision Gran Turismo accelerates from 0 to 100 km/h in less than 2.5 seconds.”
  • “This car incorporates numerous elements of our new design language such as the inverted single frame in the vehicle’s color that will be typical for our new e-tron models,” Marc Lichte, chief designer at Audi, says. “Although the design of a virtual vehicle allows much greater freedom and the creation of concepts which are only hard to implement in reality, we did not want to put a purely fictitious concept on wheels. Our aim was a fully functional car.”
  • Just one final thought for the ex-race driver tasked with piloting this at speed ? do not crash it.

 

MORE DYSON

  • Of all the future car projects, the Dyson company led by James Dyson, and best known for vacuum cleaners, seems to have grabbed a lot of attention. And from a practical point of you, once you get past lazy headlines about their cars “not sucking”, they’re very experienced in making consumer products. And battery products too, because they don’t sell those vacuum cleaners with cords any more ? they’re all batteries.
  • In an interview with Wired: Wired: Your development of solid-state batteries is key to your electric car plans, isn’t it?
  • JD:Diesel-gate and the pollution in cities was the big changer, to the point where we should be banning diesels immediately from cities. France and Britain have decided to ban internal combustion engines from 2040, so it is happening. The public want electric cars, I think, despite worries about range. And the fact that they are quiet – and by the way we ought to make tyres quieter – there are so many things that we can improve it will make the public really want electric cars.
  • Wired: You now have some heavy hitters in automotive at Dyson, such as Ian Robertson, former BMW board member…
  • JD:He just left BMW, but has been on our board for number of years. He had to leave our board when we announced we were doing a car, but I hope he will now come back on the board. We have a very good relationship with BMW. Crucially, we have taken on people from the car industry and mixed them with our people, who are naïve in this area, but inventive – which i think is a really good mix, actually.
  • Wired: Finally, you say you that your cars are going to be “radically different”. Can you tell us anything at all about they will be so different?
  • JD:No! When we started this four years ago, Tesla was still very small, diesel-gate hadn’t happened and no one was really considering electric cars. So we are not Johnny-come-latelies on this. We had seen it coming, invested in batteries and started our project.

 

JAGUAR I-PACE MAKER WORKS WITH CHINESE

  • You know that gorgeous Jaguar I-PACE, well it’s actually being outsourced for the production to a company called Magna. And now Automotivenews reports: “BAIC Group (Beijing Automotive Industry Holding Co., Ltd.) and Magna today announced that they will jointly develop a next-generation smart electric vehicle architecture for the Chinese market. China is currently the leading market for electric mobility in the world, with around 700,000 electrified cars sold in 2017. By 2020, the number of all-electric cars on China’s roads is forecast to reach around five million, due in part to subsidies and quotas by the Chinese government. Magna Steyr was selected to be BAIC’s partner due to its innovative and cost-effective solutions throughout its complete vehicle manufacturing and engineering services as well as its full-scale electronic/electrical architecture and lightweight technologies. The agreement was signed on April 8, 2018”.

 

CONGRATULATIONS ZOE

  • Gilles Normand, SVP, Electric Vehicle Business Unit at Renault celebrated the 100,000th full electric Zoe: “Today is a special day. I had the pleasure of participating in the celebration of the 100,000th Renault ZOE that was manufactured in Flins (France). Already 100,000 customers have fallen in love with ZOE! Launched in 2012, ZOE was fitted with a bigger, 41 kWh battery in 2016, allowing it to go even further. And for enhanced driving pleasure we equipped ZOE this month with a more powerful engine, the R110 (80 kW).In addition of being the leading electric vehicle in Europe for the third consecutive year in 2017, ZOE has been voted Best Electric Car by different juries composed of automotive journalists an impressive number of times throughout Europe. But today, I especially want to thank the thousands of Renault employees and the entire dealer network that have worked hard for making this happen”.

 

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