Combining the Best of Two Worlds–Introducing the Audi A6 Hybrid
Powered like a V6 with the fuel consumption of a four-cylinder, the Audi A6 Hybrid combines the best of both worlds and is slated to arrive in showrooms in 2012. Together, directly mounted behind one another, the 2.0 TFSI and electric motor of the Audi A6 hybrid form a parallel hybrid system. The units can briefly generate 245 hp of output and a system torque of 354.03 lb-ft, accelerating from 0 to 60 in approximately 7.3 seconds before topping out at 238 km/h (147.89 mph.)
Power is routed exclusively to the front wheels through an eight-speed automatic where the torque converter has been replaced by an electric motor. There is no tach which has been replaced by a power meter that shows how much precious electricity you are discharging or recouping. As with other hybrids, the batteries–a lithium-ion pack consisting of 72 cells with a capacity of 1.3 kilowatt hours and a weight of 36.7 kg (80.91 lb)–recharges when you lift off the accelerator and when you lightly apply the brakes. The car begins to use the electric motor as a generator and to slow the car down. The hydraulic braking system is activated only during heavy braking.
The lithium-ion battery is cooled by air in two ways, depending on the requirement. At low temperature load, it draws temperate air from the vehicle interior by way of a fan. If its temperature exceeds a certain limit, a separate refrigerant circuit is activated. It is coupled to the climate control system of the Audi A6 hybrid and uses a separate evaporator.
Three operating modes are easily selected by the driver at a push of a button. The EV characteristic map gives priority to the electric drive, while the D mode efficiently controls both engine and electric motor. The S mode and the tiptronic gate are designed for a sporty driving style. The hybrid sedan has five operating states: driving with the combustion engine alone, with the electric drive alone or in hybrid mode is possible, as are recuperation and boosting.
The Audi A6 hybrid is distinguished by the subtle differentiation on the outside. The tailgate, fenders and sill panel strips bear the hybrid badging. The exclusive Arctic Silver is available. The 17-inch cast wheels feature a ten-arm turbine design and tires are sized at 225/55R17. Two-tone 18-inch wheels of size 245/45R18 are optionally available as well. The Audi A6 hybrid is based on the familiar A6 Sedan and embodies the same lightweight design technologies. At 1,770 kg (3,902 lb), it will be the lightest hybrid amongst its competitors.
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