Audi pulls the plug on the R8 E-Tron – but why?

Audi has officially watered down the development of their all-electric performance car – the Audi R8 E-Tron.

Since the idea was shown to the world in 2009, Audi has developed 10 examples that are fully workable and road legal and these millions worth of electric supercars will now “be used exclusively for internal testing and development only” says Audi. Although the R8 E-Tron idea has been brought down, Audi has not given up on EVs, as they claimed to have acquired new technological expertise that will benefit their future EV production cars.

Car manufacturers are convinced with the fact that electricity is the way to go – as and when eventually, fuel goes extinct. But the battery technology has not leaped ahead enough, as most manufacturers plan. The range of the electric vehicles are not yet at par with the expectation of the automotive world. Although there are EVs on sale in the market as we speak – it is more of a technological exercise.

Another key factor involved is charging time. To recharge an electric vehicle takes a rough average of 6-8 hours – and despite the development of fast chargers that can charge in half the time, the battery life is reduced. At the same time, battery replacement is also a hefty bill when it fully deteriorates.

No doubt that the performance of the R8 E-Tron was impressive. Zerotohundred was dealt with in an electrifying 4.2 seconds and the top speed was limited to 124 mph. Despite these impressive figures, it was able to produce an acceptable range of 135 miles in a normal drive cycle. Although Audi admits that in the real world, when driven hard, the range will drop to below 100 miles. Recharge time? A whopping 14 hours.

So as we bid goodbye to the R8 E-Tron, we can now only look forward to what AMG is developing with the SLS Electric Drive and BMW with their upcoming i8.