Audi BP 18 e-tron bows at Monterey
For the first time, Audi presented a design and technical concept car during the Pebble Beach Automotive Week in Monterey, California.
The all-electric Audi PB 18 e-tron presents a radical vision for the high-performance sports car of tomorrow.
Broad and flat, visibly inspired by the wind tunnel and the racetrack, its very presence signals that it is destined to push boundaries.
The abbreviated name “PB 18 e-tron” refers both to the Pebble Beach venue for the premiere and to the technological DNA it shares with the successful LMP1 racing car Audi R18 e-tron.
In the Audi PB 18 e-tron, the driver is the one steering and stepping on the accelerator or brake pedal.
There are therefore no complex systems for piloted driving on board and no comfort features to add weight. In their place are a driver’s seat and cockpit that are integrated into an inner monocoque shell that can be slid laterally.
When driven solo, the monocoque can be positioned in the center of the interior as in a monoposto – the perfect location for the racetrack.
This is made possible not least by the bywire design of the steering and pedals; a mechanical connection of the control elements is not needed.
When the driver’s monocoque is slid into the side position, from where the PB 18 etron can be steered in everyday driving like a conventional road vehicle, there is room for a passenger.
An additional seat can be accessed on the other side integrated low above the ground and equipped with a three-point seatbelt.
The driver also benefits when getting in and out from the easily accessible outside position of the monocoque, which can be moved when the door is open up to the sill.
The concept uses three powerful electric motors – one up front and two in the rear.
The latter are centrally located between the steering knuckles, each directly driving one wheel via half-shafts. The combined torque of up to 830 newton metres (612.2 lb/ ft) allows acceleration from 0-100 km/h (62.1 mph) in scarcely more than two seconds – a speed that differs only marginally from that of a current LMP1 prototype.
In normal road traffic, the driver can limit the maximum speed in favour of range. This limitation is easy to deactivate on the racetrack and can be adapted to local conditions.
Audi’s high performance all-electric PB 18 e-tron was shown to the world during car week at Monterey California.