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Audi has shared full details of its new e-tron GT, including a hardcore RS version, ahead of the car’s international launch.
The e-tron GT is a four-door coupe follow-up to the e-tron mid-size SUV which arrived in Australia late last year, which will initially be available in two forms, the unnamed base version and performance-focused RS.
Like its Tesla rival and Porsche Taycan cousin, both forms of e-tron GT will arrive with supercar-rattling performance of 350kW/630Nm and 440kW/830Nm respectively, while also boasting a competitive-with-Tesla range of up to 488km (WLTP).
Importantly, the e-tron GT will have a huge lithium-ion battery pack manufactured by LG Chem, with a usable rating of 85.7kWh. It is paired to an 800-volt charging system to allow for a max charging input of 270kW on DC power, for a full charge time (5-80%) as quick as 22 minutes and 30 seconds. The brand says this should offer owners around 100km of range in five minutes.
The e-tron GT also has a rare optional 22kW AC charge inverter, allowing owners to charge as fast as possible from AC sources. Charge times on AC are as quick as five hours and 15 minutes with the 22kW inverter option, or nine hours and 30 minutes with the standard 11kW inverter.
Unusually, the e-tron GT has European-standard (Type-2) AC charging ports on both sides, but will have fast DC charging via a Type-2 CCS port available on just one side.
Charging at such speeds creates heat issues, and as such the car has a new cooling system for the battery to be used during fast charging sessions. This cooling system can be pre-prepared when a high-speed charger is selected in the navigation system to allow for optimum charging times.
Energy efficiency for the e-tron GT is a claimed combined 19.6kWh/100km (NEDC) for the standard GT and 20.2kWh/100km for the RS.
Three brake packages will be offered in the e-tron range - standard steel brakes, a new tungsten carbide braking system (which the brand says is 10 times harder than steel and reduces brake dust by 90 per cent while increasing durability by 30 per cent) and performance-oriented carbon ceramics.
The e-tron GT RS meanwhile, offers a 0-100km/h sprint time of just 3.3 seconds (making it the fastest Audi yet created), with the carbide brake package as standard and adaptive suspension. The e-tron GT range is the first at Audi to offer three chamber suspension.
Power is split across two axles, with a 175kW motor on the front and a 320kW unit on the rear axle (335kW in the RS variant) although overall outputs can be boosted under "extreme driving situations". The fully variable rear axle also has a dynamically locking differential, and the e-tron GT also has four-wheel steering.
Dramatic design decisions (for Audi) include covering up its signature “single frame” grille and filling it with panel work.
The e-tron’s interior trim consists of recycled fibres (up to 119 plastic bottles are recycled in the construction of the seats) rather than leather trim. The carpet, floormats and even headliner are all made of recycled materials.
The brand says the car’s ‘Grand Touring’ status is lived up to by offering not just performance, but also comfort, and has made steps such as extruding a space out of the under-floor battery pack to expand leg-room for rear passengers, and lowering the seat base down to offer more headroom, too. The boot offers a smallish 405-litre (VDA) luggage capacity, but is supported by a so-called ‘frunk’ under the bonnet. This offers an additional 85L of storage.
The e-tron GT even makes a unique sound, specifically put together to provide aural feedback to the driver. The sounds were made up of such items as guitars played with violin bows, and even a household oscillating fan heard through a cardboard pipe.
Unlike the e-tron SUV, e-tron GT will be built in Germany at the brand’s Bollinger Hofe, Neckarsulm factory in a process which the brand says is carbon neutral. It is the same production line which assembles the Audi R8.
Audi’s Australian representatives confirmed to CarsGuide that both forms of the e-tron GT are slated to arrive on our shores in the third quarter of 2021. Pricing and local specification will be detailed closer to that time.