On the road with Audi’s new Q5 and A8 TFSI e plug-in hybrids

MUNICH—That we need to do something about the transportation sector’s carbon impact should be beyond clear by now. With luck, that means a lot more people walking, cycling, and taking public transport for the short trips that make up so much of our lives. But America’s infrastructure and culture is heavily biased toward the personal automobile and the need to make road trips, even if few drive more than 100 miles a day.

But even if we can’t get to a full battery EV fleet any time soon, there’s still plenty of low-hanging fruit. Like the big and inefficient luxury vehicles bought by the upper-middle class—if there’s a way to make the short trips that people do in those less actively damaging to the planet, I think that’s a positive. Which is where these two Audis come in.

I was in Munich to learn more about PPE, the modular electric-car architecture that Audi, Porsche, and perhaps Bentley and Lamborghini will use to build EVs to escape the massive fines looming for OEMs that can’t get their European fleet CO2 average down to below 95g/km. But not everyone can or will want a BEV as their next car. Fortunately for those with serious range anxiety, there’s always the option of a plug-in hybrid EV. So it was handy that the company had some of its new PHEVs on hand for us to try out.

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Source: Ars Technica

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