Audi is previewing its future connectivity and fuel cell technology in the guise of the h-tron quattro concept car, which it has revealed this week at the Detroit motor show.
Measuring 4.88 metres long, 1.93 metres wide and 1.54 metres tall, the five-door “allroad” look vehicle is closely related to the e‑tron quattro concept, a purely electric SUV first showcased at last year’s Frankfurt motor show. Both are based on the Volkswagen Group’s second-generation MLB platform.
The latest design study is powered by an all-electric drive that uses three hydrogen tanks as its primary energy source. The power from the fuel cell is combined with a 100 kW lithium-ion battery driving two electric motors – one located on the front axle with an output of 90 kW (121 bhp), the other on the rear axle developing 140 kW (188 bhp). The system delivers a claimed combined output of 282 bhp, along with torque of 406 lb-ft. Top speed is restricted to 124 mph.
Audi says the car can be fully refuelled with hydrogen in around four minutes, and is then ready to drive for up to 372 miles.
On the inside, the concept has room for four persons and 500 litres of luggage. The cabin also provides a foretaste of the technologies for autonomous driving that Audi says it will put into production in 2017 with the next generation A8.
An example is the newly-developed central driver system that computes a model of the car’s surroundings in real time and makes this information available to the various assistance systems. Called zFAS, Audi engineers say this setup can assume driving tasks at speeds of up to 37 mph.