Audi is no stranger to making cars fit for the glitz and the glamour of Hollywood. Will Smith’s RSQ sports coupe from the 2004 sci-fi film I, Robot was based on Audi’s product line and design language at the time. It was a pretty neat marketing tool for the German automaker if the film’s box office success was anything to go by. Now, though, there’s a new star debuting in the movie capital of the world. And rather than crashing into swarms of humanoid killing machines, this thing may well be the shape of things to come.
Meet the e-Tron GT concept. While it is not designed for a police detective who hates mechanized cyborg armies, it is essentially a preview of Audi’s commitment to creating a fully electric product line as the company steadily shifts its research-and-development efforts to alternative sources of energy. Just like both of its e-Tron siblings—the SUV and the Sportback—the GT concept will become the basis for a vehicle that is slated for series production in 2020.
Just like anyone wanting to make an impact on the red carpet, Audi has taken steps to ensure that its e-Tron GT concept becomes the darling of photographers from the moment people lay their eyes on it. The eye-catching low roofline is the focal point of the car and is designed to let the four-door grand tourer slice through the air with minimal resistance. Tastefully creased bodywork complements the wide twin-spoke 22-inch alloy wheels of this long-distance cruiser.
Tabloids never stop nitpicking every single detail of anyone (or anything, in this case) fortunate or unfortunate enough to be in the spotlight. To this end, Audi made sure that critics would only have positive things to say about every square centimeter of the e-Tron GT concept. Audi’s signature Singleframe radiator grille takes up prime real estate at the front. Inspired by the brand’s RS family of cars, this suggests that Audi Sport may create high-performance cars based on the e-Tron GT concept.
The headlight clusters have sequentially activated LEDs that turn on to welcome the driver—a feature that is steadily being adopted by premium car manufacturers. Even getting smoked by the e-Tron GT concept is a light show in itself, thanks to the taillight strip with wedge-shaped segments. Wrapping everything up is the “kinetic dust” paint job that’s unique to the car. This dark, warm hue highlights the e-Tron GT concept’s chiseled curves and edges, and will certainly be worth pointing out when pictures of Audi’s newest star show up on motoring websites.
Audi believes that concept cars not only have to talk the talk, but they also have to walk the walk. And the e-Tron GT definitely has sporting credentials that will not leave it shamefully floundering on the autobahn or the racetrack. The power unit unleashes 590 all-electric horses coursed through a revolutionary Quattro all-wheel drive system featuring individual drive motors for the front and rear axles. The sprint to the century mark is dispatched in 3.5 seconds. Top speed is limited to 240km/h to preserve battery life because, really, no star wants to be caught collapsing from hunger on the streets of Los Angeles.
And speaking of maximizing the range, the e-Tron GT concept’s lithium-ion battery pack has enough juice for over 400km of motoring. Access to this much range is also made easier since the car can be charged like most fancy mobile phones of today. Audi’s wireless charging is a contactless system that makes use of a charging pad which the car parks on. This pad generates alternating magnetic fields between it and the vehicle’s undercarriage. Without going into a very boring technical discussion on how this works, let’s just say magic happens and the e-Tron GT concept is fully charged overnight with no fuss and no wires.
Celebrities are often seen driving around in hybrid and electric vehicles to show their supposed love for Mother Earth. The e-Tron GT concept is also contributing to this good cause by putting emphasis on sustainability in its construction. The stylish interior, in particular, is in Audi’s typical high-tech yet functional fashion, but the materials used in it make all the difference. The seats are wrapped in synthetic leather, mimicking the feel of actual animal hides without the environmental guilt. Interior fabrics such as those used for the carpet are made out of recycled fibers put together from used fishing nets.
Hollywood continues to be a domain where cars ranging from Marty McFly’s Toyota SR5 truck to the General Lee (Dodge Charger) become stars or heroes in their own right. Audi is no different, having been featured in such blockbuster films as Transporter 3 and the Iron Man series. Movies often become our sneak peek into the world of tomorrow, the interpretation of which is curbed only by one’s imagination. And if the e-Tron GT concept does become part of showbiz’s elite fleet, the future looks bright for the automobile.