New Concept Car: Audi A2

Audi must be looking to take over this year’s Frankfurt auto show completely. It has already announced a slew of concept cars and new production models that will debut at the show, and now has revealed some sketches of its seventh Frankfurt debutant, the electric A2 concept. (The A2 joins the S6 sedan and Avant, S7, S8, the Urban Concept, and the Urban Concept Spyder.)

Audi is referring to the A2 concept as a “premium-class space concept,” and the company claims the small car will comfortably seat four—although, at less than 12.5 feet long, it is roughly the same size as a Mini Cooper hatchback, which definitely does not comfortably seat four. The interior looks like it was designed with functionality in mind, though, featuring reconfigurable and removable seats on thin tracks built into the flat floor. For more stowage, the bottom seat cushions fold up to reveal hidden compartments. The floor is covered in a ribbed coating of recycled polyester, and the door panels are polyurethane.

The concept is loaded with contemporary Audi connectivity tech, including Bluetooth, wireless internet, Google Earth and Street View navigation screen overlays, Audi traffic information, and Google point-of-interest search. Most of the controls are manipulated via futuristic touch-sensitive surfaces, so despite the tech overload, the overall look of the interior is clean, uncluttered, and straightforward. The exterior look is handsome, with the tallish profile lending the A2 the look of a smaller and lower Audi Q5. The chunky concept’s stance is helped by its two-piece 18-inch wheels.

The A2’s front wheels are powered by a transverse-mounted, 116-hp electric motor that is fed by a 31-kilowatt-hour lithium-ion battery pack that lives in the car’s sandwich floor. Like almost all electric cars, the A2 makes do with a single-speed transmission. According to Audi, its concept weighs less than 2535 pounds (1150 kilograms), thanks to a body constructed from aluminum and carbon fiber. If your garage happens to be wired with a 400-volt, three-phase connection—and whose isn’t—Audi says the A2’s battery will need just an hour and a half to fully recharge. The more common 240-volt connection will top off the pack in four hours. Audi also designed the concept to work with inductive charging, although it neglected to say how long juicing up with this method would take.

Audi says the A2 has a driving range of 124 miles, and that it can whir from 0 to 62 mph in just 9.3 seconds. Top speed is limited to 93 mph to maximize the car’s range. Drivers can activate a semi-autonomous driving mode on the go. The concept may be high-tech, but it rides on a relatively humble MacPherson-strut front and torsion-beam rear suspension.

Thanks to: Car and Driver

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