Currently reading: Audi faces a battle to make lightweight tech for EVs affordable
Audi's customers want a range of 300 miles from electric vehicles – the company faces a challenge to implement the tech to make that viable
Jim Holder
News
2 mins read
6 October 2015

The next generation of lightweight materials is still too expensive to make them viable for mass production, a senior engineering source at Audi has revealed.

The German manufacturer's research has suggested that its customers want at least 300 miles of range per charge in any electric Audi. But the firm faces a battle to introduce the weight savings and battery technology that can deliver that sort of range for a cost customers are willing to pay.

A senior insider in Audi's engineering division said: "Batteries are heavy so it makes sense to reduce the weight of the car. But as with all weight-reduction materials you have to look at the costs and how you bring the materials together in the factory.

“For example, if you have multi-material bodywork -if you have steel, for example, in combination with aluminum and carbonfibre - you can glue it, rivet it or you can weld it. After that, for example, there’s the painting process and anti-corrosion process - all done at quite high temperatures, prompting the materials to work against themselves. We need a lot of know-how of how to do that, and it’s expensive, too.”

Audi is launching an all-electric SUV first - based on the Audi e-tron quattro concept shown at the Frankfurt motor show – because it will be easier to make a profitable car in that segment in the long-term. “You need a big car for the space of the batteries to realise 300 miles,” said the source, “and if you have a big battery pack in a big car, it is going to need to be priced appropriately. So we must look for premium customers in a big-car sector.”

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topsecret456987 6 October 2015

I think the problem is that

I think the problem is that the established car manufacturers are stuck in their ways. Tesla with no experience of building a car, Tesla could engineer the right solution, placing components in the optimal position. The old school approach insists on an engine in the front, "fuel" in the boot, people in the middle approach to car design. Production tooling and assembly lines reinforce this approach. Thus, they will all really struggle to get to grips with electric cars and to a lesser extent fuel cell type vehicles.
Outoftowner1969 6 October 2015

Easy

If you can't cheat them, buy them. VW should use some of their ill-gotten gains and acquire Tesla.
Citytiger 6 October 2015

Outoftowner1969 wrote: If you

Outoftowner1969 wrote:

If you can't cheat them, buy them. VW should use some of their ill-gotten gains and acquire Tesla.

lol, at the rate VW are losing in money, it might be Tesla buying them..

rare 6 October 2015

Go Tesla tbh. I wish them all

Go Tesla tbh. I wish them all the best.