Audi’s second electric autonomous smart concept for the 2017 IAA is called Elaine – and fans of the brand will recognize it as a rehash of the E-Tron Sportback, the twist being the significantly smarter technology that Elaine now has.
The E-Tron Sportback concept was first seen this April during the Auto Shanghai event in China and has now been redressed and re-technologized for the European premiere. Aside from the slightly updated design, Elaine’s main features revolve around its highly advanced autonomous driving system capable of meeting Level 4 SAE requirements. Audi has effectively taken the traffic jam pilot system from the flagship A8 and upgraded it to a new level, turning it into a highway pilot. As such, Elaine’s autonomous system will be capable of dealing with most situations on a motorway, including lane changes – but you can still assume control at any moment.
The electric concept features one motor for the front wheels and another couple for the rear ones, coming with a combined output of 430 horsepower (320 kilowatts) in normal situations, with a boost function providing for a limited period a total of 496 hp (370 kW). As such, the sprint to 62 mph (100 kph) takes a solid sports car’s four and a half seconds. Elaine uses the same 95-kWh battery pack as the previous incarnation, and it should enable a theoretical NEDC range of more than 310.7 miles (500 kilometers). The E-Tron Sportback’s production version has already been confirmed for 2019 at the company’s plant in Brussels.