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The Audi e-Tron Vision Gran Turismo is real and really fast

From your favorite video game to real-world racetracks

This is not a computer-generated image. It's the real deal. PHOTO FROM AUDI

Audi has just unveiled its latest supercar in the shape of the e-Tron Vision Gran Turismo, an electric racing machine that will lead a life of speed both online and offline. Part of the Vision Gran Turismo project, an undertaking first started by the creator of the popular Gran Turismo video game series, Kazunori Yamauchi, the uber-Audi is now available to play in Gran Turismo Sport on PlayStation 4, and joins an ever-increasing list of stunning and hyperfast dream machines. Unlike many of the other Vision GT machines, however, the Audi is as fast in the real world as it is in the virtual one.

This electric thing will tour racetracks around the world. PHOTO FROM AUDI

The e-Tron Vision Gran Turismo had initially been developed for the popular racing game, before Audi bosses gave the orders to not only build a real-life version of it, but also to make sure it’s also as fast as the in-game one. Engineers at the German automaker’s pre-production facility immediately went to work and managed to create the beautiful machine you see here in a mere 11 months. Not bad, considering the effort and the technology that went into not just putting together a rolling shell to show off at car shows, but also a fully functioning race car that will be used at various Formula E events through the year.

In spite of its size, this race car weighs just 1,450kg. PHOTO FROM AUDI

Weighing just 1,450kg, or roughly as much as 500 PlayStation 4 consoles, the juiced-up racer uses three electric motors—two at the rear and one at the front—to achieve fully electric, all-wheel drive. With each motor putting out 200kW of power, the e-Tron is sporting no fewer than 815 battery-powered horses under its skin, with each of them having to haul a mere 1.78kg of weight. The result is a perfectly balanced car that can burst from zero to 100km/h in less than 2.5 seconds.

Three electric motors produce a total output of 815hp. PHOTO FROM AUDI

Fans of the brand can try the e-Tron Vision GT in the game, but a few very lucky individuals will be able to experience the real deal when Audi takes the car to various Formula E events. Starting at the race in Rome on April 14, the car will be used as race taxi, giving customers and guests rides around the track to demonstrate the capabilities of Audi’s electric dream. There’s no word on how you can get a ticket for one of those rides, or if selling a kidney will increase your chances, but one thing is for sure: Audi is aggressively continuing its push into the world of alternative fuels, and this car is a publicity-hugging part of those efforts.

The virtual-reality race car is now a real-world track weapon. PHOTO FROM AUDI

With the resurgent manufacturer continuing its focus on electric cars, we can’t help but think that the e-Tron Vision Gran Turismo may also just be a glimpse into the type of car that will replace the R8 in the not-too-distant future. The Teutonic auto firm has already announced that an electric GT car will be built, and it seems the pieces of the puzzle are slowly falling into place. Expect a lot more whirrrrrr and a lot less vrooooom from the Four Rings in the future.

Frank Schuengel

Frank is a German e-commerce executive who loves his wife, a Filipina, so much he decided to base himself in Manila. He has interesting thoughts on Philippine motoring. He writes the aptly named ‘Frankly’ column.