Although Audi will not publicly label itself a "green" automaker, it has reported that it will be going forward with its R-8 based e-tron electric supercar, now slated to be on show-room floors in 2012.
The company is also saying that production will be limited to a 1000 vehicles total. It's rather open to interpretation whether that number strikes one as a mere bagatelle, an indication of a lack of serious commitment to EV's, or whether one reflects that 1000 is more vehicles than Tesla has yet built in its entire history, and the number seems like a pretty large toe in the "green" pool, whatever the Audi marketing flacks are saying.
The e-tron, which debuted at the Frankfurt auto-show in September, reveled in some pretty incredible technical specs, like 313 horsepower and 3000+ lb/ft of torque(!). It turns out that the latter number may have been calculated in a somewhat misleading fashion (a contention which would seem to be borne out by the reported acceleration time of 0-62 mph in 4.8 seconds), but still, the car should be an all-electric screamer.
No official price has been released, but the number being bandied about by those in the know is $160,000.00. The car has certainly generated a lot of attention for Audi, and company big-wigs may be beginning to sit up and take notice in a postitive way. Nevertheless, it's difficult to say whether a car that's actually slower in terms of straight-line acceleration than a Tesla Roadster and costs half-again as much, will be embraced by the market, and what the effect will be on Audi if it is.
[Source:Autoblog, et al]