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by Tim Beissmann

A more powerful version of the Audi A1 e-tron has joined a trial drive program in Germany as the manufacturer seeks to hone its plug-in hybrid technology.

The city-sized Audi A1 e-tron’s electric motor has been uprated to produce 85kW of power and 300Nm of torque – up 10kW/60Nm over the vehicles involved in the original pilot program.

The extra grunt now sees the front-wheel-drive A1 e-tron accelerate from 0-100km/h in 9.8 seconds, while top speed remains limited to 130km/h.

The electric motor takes its power from a 13.3kWh lithium-ion battery, which is good for a pure-electric range of 50km. When charge runs low, the 25kW/300Nm 354cc petrol generator kicks in to top up the battery, allowing the A1 e-tron to cover an additional 200km in hybrid mode.

The battery can be fully recharged in roughly three hours from a standard household power point.


Eighty of the “next-generation” Audi A1 e-trons have been deployed across six individual projects in the German federal government’s Electromobility Showcase initiative, in which Audi expects the vehicles to cover a combined one million kilometres.

While the A1 e-tron remains a development vehicle at this stage, much of its plug-in hardware and electric technology will be shared with the larger Audi A3 e-tron, which Audi Australia has all but locked in for our market and is hopeful of introducing locally before the end of next year.