Audi is planning 20 all-electric models by 2025—here’s how it will do it
From left to right: a covered up PPE concept model that we weren’t allowed to take pictures of, the MEB-based Q4 e-tron, the J1-based e-tron GT, and the MLB Evo-based e-tron. [credit:
Jonathan Gitlin ]
Electrify, or die. That’s the choice facing the world’s global automakers—at least if they plan to sell their wares in the European Union past 2020. That’s when strict new fleet-wide CO2 emissions regulations phase in, with massive fines for those who can’t comply with the new 95g CO2/km rules. Diesel’s disgrace means that battery power is the only real option for the OEMs, and few are embracing this reality more firmly than Volkswagen Group—a touch ironic given its previous stance on diesel power. Now, we’ve had our best look yet at one of the ways VW Group is going to do that with its forthcoming PPE (Premium Platform Electric), which will make up the bones of future Audis and Porsches.
Four platforms to rule them all?
VW Group has long championed the use of flexible vehicle architectures—its modular MQB platform lets it build everything from a diminutive Polo hatchback all the way up to the supersized Atlas SUV. That approach allows the automotive giant to take advantage of economies of scale across multiple brands, and it’s using the same playbook when it comes to battery electric vehicles. For smaller vehicles, its new MEB platform comes on stream in the next few months, first with the Europe-only ID.3 hatchback, then next year with the US-bound ID.4 crossover.
We’ll also get at least one MEB-based Audi in the US, the Q4 e-tron. This is going to be Audi’s entry-level BEV, comparable to the current Q3 in exterior dimensions, although with Q5 interior space courtesy of a BEV’s superior packaging. The Q4 e-tron, like other MEB variants, will be rear-wheel drive as standard. It’ll use a permanent magnet synchronous motor (PSM), although all-wheel drive with a front asynchronous motor (ASM) will be an option. But MEB is unsuitable for larger, more expensive, higher performance BEVs, just like MQB is unsuitable for bigger Audis and Porsches.
Source: Ars Technica