Audi has just announced that the Audi R8 e-tron has set a world record for a production vehicle with an electric drive system on the Nürburgring Nordschleife. Racing driver Markus Winkelhock piloted the all-electric-drive sports car around the 12.92-mile track in 8:09.099 minutes.
"The R8 e-tron has given a magnificent demonstration of its potential on the toughest race track in the world," said Michael Dick, Audi AG Board Member for Technical Development. Dick, who completed a fast lap himself in the R8 e-tron, added: "The record-setting drive confirmed that we are on the right track. To us, electric mobility has never been about sacrifice, but rather is about emotion, sportiness and driving pleasure."
The R8 e-tron is powered an electric drive system that puts out 375 horsepower and 604 lb-ft. of torque. The Audi R8 e-tron accelerates from 0-62 mph in 4.6 seconds. Its top speed is normally limited to 124 mph; 155 mph was approved for the record-setting lap. The R8 e-tron's rechargeable lithium-ion battery stores 49 KWh of energy - enough for a distance of about 133.59 miles.
"The record drives were a fantastic experience for me," said Markus Winkelhock. The 32-year-old, who lives near Stuttgart, has a high standard for comparison - the Audi R8 LMS ultra, in which he, along with Marc Basseng, Christopher Haase and Frank Stippler, won the 24-hour race at the Nürburgring a few weeks ago.
"Of course, the R8 e-tron is a production car, not a racing car with the assistance of aerodynamics," Winkelhock emphasized. "But with its low center of gravity and rear biased weight distribution, it brings with it a lot of sporty qualities. The torque with which the electric motors propel the car uphill beats everything that I know - even if they make hardly any noise in the process, which at the start was really a completely new experience for me. In places where I really need traction, the torque vectoring - the displacement of the torque between the powered wheels - really helps me."
The Audi R8 e-tron is scheduled to arrive this fall.