Game Changer? Edition – Audi EV Aims for 311 Mile Range

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THE CAR COACH REPORTS:

August 14, 2015

 

Game Changer? Edition –  

Audi EV Aims for 311 Mile Range

 

 

Audi Logo

 

Whenever I am asked about EVs, chief among my complaints is the short range. Why buy an EV at a high mark-up that gets maybe half the range of my fuel-efficient combustion engine vehicle? Audi might have the game changer: http://www.autoblog.com/2015/08/14/audi-ev-batteries-lg-chem-samsung-sdi/

 

While this article is really just a teaser to announce a partnership between Audi, LG and Samsung, the goal of the triumvirate is to produce an electric SUV with a 311 mile range. The announcement is a huge leap forward. Tesla’s model S with its standard 85kWh battery maxes out at 270 miles. But 311 miles in a standard SUV. How does that change the EV landscape, I wonder? And what if engineers found a way to put that SUV engine in a sedan or other smaller vehicle?

 

As for the prospective Audi EV, the model will be based off of the current Q7 platform and could arrive by early 2018. Rumors abound: a 90kWh battery, three motors, 500 horsepower and 516 pound-feet of torque. This isn’t going to be a plodding beast. If the rumors are true it should be nimble and fun to drive. And it can be driven as far as a combustion engine vehicle. That in itself is enough of a reason for some fence sitters to go to the EV side. I do have some reservations and questions.

 

Unless infrastructure grows exponentially in the next two and a half years, long range vehicle or not, charging stations are still few and far between. Without reason, I don’t envision a large-scale EV infrastructure build up, though I could be wrong. I think that Audi’s SUV and other vehicles that might follow would drive infrastructure build up and not the anticipation of a capable vehicle, don’t you?

 

Another hurdle for a successful EV switch would be price point. Can the average American consumer afford a Tesla S, the heretofore longest range EV? No, they cannot. Will Americans be able to afford the Audi? Pricing remains to be seen. I will say that once Audi produces this 311-mile vehicle, other companies might be able to follow suit with competitively priced models. This is really going to be the sticking point. Even “economically priced” manufacturers that produce EVs with not even close to 311 miles per charge are ridiculously overpriced.

 

And lastly, splitting the tax burden with EV owners for use of the roads would make the EV switch successful. There are no plans in place that I am aware of since green vehicles have to have tax rebates and bonus money thrown at consumers still.

 

In some ways, we have some distance to travel before I am completely sold on the EV. But if Audi’s engine is successful, which I am sure it will be, the EV might be here to stay.

 

But what do you think?

 

Post your comments!

 

 

My Final Thought:

 

Any thinking person knows that not all police officers are bad, that most aren’t bad, and those many good officers do, in fact, protect and serve the public. Here is an example of just that. http://www.autoblog.com/2015/08/13/michigan-deputy-scolds-and-arrests-fellow-officer-for-drunk-driv/

 

It’s good to know that there are plenty of police officers who are doing the right thing on a daily basis. Those officers tend not to be recognized. My only real hope is that the offending police officer learns his lesson and the arresting officer doesn’t face repercussions for doing the right thing.

 

The arresting officer showed a lot of courage arresting the drunk off-duty officer, whether people recognize it or not.

 

But what do you think?

 

Post your comments!

 

Love Your Car! See you next week!

 

–Lauren Fix

 

 

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