Audi A7 hybrid: plug-in version to premiere at Frankfurt
Audi will reveal a powerful plug-in hybrid version of its luxurious A7 four-door coupe at the Frankfurt Motor Show.
The A7 55 TFSI e quattro uses a turbocharged 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol engine and an electric motor for a combined total power output of 367hp. Performance is impressive, with 0-62mph taking 5.7 seconds and a top speed of 155mph. It can also drive at up to 84mph on electric power alone.
The A7 comes with quattro four-wheel drive, with power going to the front in most circumstances but can be supplied to the rear in the event of a loss of grip. Audi says The A7 e quattro has been designed to allow drivers to do the majority of their driving electrically. So by default it starts in EV mode, with the car moving on electric power only unless you extend the accelerator past a certain point, when the combustion engine will kick in.
In Battery Hold mode, the system stores battery capacity for you to drive electrically later. Hybrid mode is activated either manually by the driver or in combination with the sat nav. In this mode, the car cycles between the combustion engine and the electric motor to efficiently reduce overall fuel consumption by 'freewheeling' with the engine switched off and recuperation energy when coasting. This can recover as much as 35kW of power.
The electric motor also takes care of all light braking and recuperates lost energy back to the battery. When used with the sat nav, it uses mapping map data to help manage energy consumption and allow the majority of urban driving to be done electrically. A haptic pulse from the accelerator pedal alerts the driver when electric-only mode activates and deactivates.
A Type 2 charging plug is available as an option, allowing the A7’s battery to be topped up quickly at public charging stations. A full charge from one of these takes 2.5 hours, while a conventional domestic socket charge takes seven hours to do the same.
The myAudi app allows you to check on the status of the battery and how much range is left remotely through your phone, as well as find charging points. The app can also be used to pre-heat or pre-cool the car’s interior before use.
In standard S line guise, the A7 55 TFSI e quattro gets privacy glass, LED headlights, sports seats, four-zone air conditioning, Audi’s ‘virtual cockpit’ dashboard screen, 19-inch wheels and red brake calipers.
This A7 plug-in joins a raft of 'TFSI e' PHEV models in the Audi range, including a Q5 SUV and A6 and A8 luxury saloons. The order book is open now, with deliveries expected towards the end of 2019. UK prices haven’t been revealed yet, but it starts at the equivalent of just under £70,000 in Germany.