Audi have just taken a major step towards the future with the unveiling of the Audi h-tron Quattro Concept. The concept car, which is powered by a fuel cell and lithium-ion battery, is something that Audi have been working on for many years.
The lithium-ion battery is there to support the fuel cell in terms of performance, boosting and recuperating energy being its main task. The 110 kW battery weighs only 60 kilograms and the added power makes sure that a sprint to a 100 km/h can be done under 7 seconds. The Audi h-tron Quattro Concept has 550 Nm of torque and the speedometer tops out at 200 km/h.
The power from the fuel cell and lithium-ion battery drive two electric motors. The first one is located in the front with an output of 90 kW, the second one is located in the back outputting 140 kW. It’s clear by now that the Audi h-tron Quattro Concept is packed with technology of the future, also featuring a heatpump and solar roof that boost an average of 1000 kilometers extra range annually.
The most impressive part are the three hydrogen tanks the Audi h-tron Quattro Concept carries, combined responsible for a total range of 600 kilometers (372 miles). Here comes the best part: it only takes 4 minutes to refuel! That’s similar to a regular petrol engine, while having double the range of the current average all-electrical vehicles currently on the market. Seeing that the h-tron concept also emits zero CO2, this could potentially be a huge competitive advantage over all-electric drivetrains.
Its actual fuel consumption is the equivalent of 1 kilogram of hydrogen per 100 kilometers. When looking at it in a politically correct way, the h-tron supposedly doesn’t reach zero emissions because of the fact that the Audi E-gas – which it is fueled with – needs to be won using electricity. However, the same could be said for EV’s, electricity needs to be generated regardless.
Taking a look into the Audi E-gas network, which has developed over the past 10 years quite silently. Since 2013, the first power-to-gas plant in the world has been running entirely on green energy, breaking down water into oxygen and hydrogen by electrolysis. As a result the gas reacts with CO2, eventually creating the Audi e-gas – otherwise known as synthetic methane – that the current Audi A3 g-tron and A4 g-tron.
As of this moment, there are already many customers that tap Audi e-gas via the existing natural gas network, extending to many different fuel stations. In the near future it will be possible for fuel cell cars like the Audi h-tron Quattro Concept, to tap e-gas at the pump and drive with zero emissions.
The exterior of the car is designed with an obvious emphasis on aerodynamics. Despite the car being almost 5 metres in length, it’s only 1.54 metres tall! The result is a CD value of 0.27, ensuring getting the best range and efficiency possible. In terms of lighting in the front, it’s an obvious relative to the at the 2015 IAA unveiled Audi e-tron Concept. The future is bright with lit up logos, grilles and the latest matrix and OLED lighting technologies.
Although the car is far from reaching the sky in terms of height, the interior should be a comfortable space to be. Fitted with the latest technologies, there are three OLED screens displaying everything the driver and passengers need to know. In fact, there are only two buttons that let you control the displays. The rest is done using the touch mechanisms along the steering wheel.