Fast sportscar-like acceleration does funny things to your body. Your stomach tightens, your arms tense up, and there’s a compression in your sinuses from the g-forces.
Now, with Audi’s fast-growing range of e-tron models, you can add an electrifying tingle to the hairs on the back of your neck.
If you ever thought the future of electric driving would be dull, the fully charged rush of Audi e-tron quattro grip and stunning Boost Mode acceleration is all you need to change your mind. That’s why we took the Audi e-tron Sportback 55 quattro to Thruxton, the UK’s fastest racing circuit, to see exactly what it could do.
Simply select Dynamic mode, release the brake, floor the throttle and your head is thrust back as the full 408PS and 664Nm of all-electric torque is delivered in one gigantic burst of breath-taking off-the-line electrified quattro traction.
The race from 0-62mph is dispatched in just 5.7 seconds, and – as you continue accelerating towards the e-tron Sportback’s 124mph top speed – there’s no clunky interruption in the power delivery from the ebb and flow of gear changes. Instead, it’s simply a seemingly never-ending wave of power that feels like it could go on forever.
Braking into Thruxton’s Club chicane, the low-mounted positioning of the lithium-ion batteries and air suspension deliver impressive hunkered-down handling that defies the naturally increased weight you get with electric powertrains. Accelerating out of the chicane, you can feel the e-tron Sportback’s front-mounted motor kicking in to deliver extra confidence-inspiring all-wheel-drive traction.
Blending 40 years of all-wheel-drive know-how with the most advanced high-tech all-electric powertrains: this is how Audi e-tron is electrifying quattro performance.
To find out more about Audi’s e-tron range, head to audi.co.uk/electric
Born on the rally stage
The concept of quattro all-wheel-drive has been ingrained in Audi’s philosophy of ‘Vorsprung durch Technik’ – or progress through technology – since 1980. All-wheel-drive has been around since pretty much the dawn of the motor car, but its use was primarily limited to rugged off-road vehicles for agriculture, exploring and the military – designed to conquer tough terrain at a slow pace, with a complex set of heavy differentials feeding power to the wheels with the most traction.
The arrival of the Audi quattro in 1980 changed all of that. Using compact, lightweight performance-focused all-wheel-drive technology that was designed more for everyday roads than the back of beyond, it delivered stellar traction, confidence-inspiring grip and sporty performance on all surfaces – whether smooth and grippy asphalt, pockmarked country lanes, rain-soaked roads or loose marble-like gravel.
The Audi quattro road car made its debut at the 1980 Geneva Motor Show, but it was on the stages of the World Rally Championship where the quattro legend was truly born. With three wins in its debut season of 1981, the manufacturers’ title in 1982, the drivers’ title for the late Hannu Mikkola in 1983 and both the drivers’ and manufacturers’ title with Stig Blomqvist in 1984, the Audi quattro blitzed its rivals and revolutionised the sport.
In 1987, Walter Röhrl drove a specially modified version of the new Audi Sport quattro S1 to the 4301m summit of the famed Pikes Peak hillclimb in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado in just 10m48s – a stunning achievement that brought to an end Audi’s time in rallying and off-road racing.