Audi will speed up the production of battery-electric vehicles in the near future. The company has a stable of high-performance cars as it ramps up EV production, and a new video pits its past against its future with the new RS6 Performance drag racing the RS E-Tron GT.
The RS E-Tron GT makes more horsepower – 637 of the stuff – but less torque, turning out just 604 pound-feet of twist. The electric saloon is also heavier, weighing 2,345 kilograms (5,169 pounds). Audi also caps the car’s top speed to 155 miles per hour; however, it is 0.3 seconds quicker to 62 mph.
Gallery: 2024 Audi RS6 Avant Performance: First Drive Review
The RS6 Performance makes 621 hp from its twin-turbocharged 4.0-litre V8 engine and 850 Nm pound-feet of torque. It needs 3.6 seconds to reach 62 mph, but it can blast to 180 mph. It’s also lighter than the EV, tipping the scales at 2,075 kg (4,574 lbs).
The RS6 struggled to launch in the first race, allowing the E-Tron GT to claim a sizeable lead, one that the combustion-powered Audi could not close. The estate got a much better start in the second race, launching off the line ahead of the E-Tron. However, it wasn’t a lead the RS6 kept, with the EV quickly blasting by and earning its second victory.
The rolling race from 60 mph didn’t go well for the RS6. The E-Tron was just too quick for the V8-powered estate. The E-Tron’s extra weight didn’t ding its performance capability compared to the RS6. However, the weight was an issue during the final brake test.
The heavier EV needed a lot more space to come to a stop from 100 mph. The lighter RS6 stopped at a shorter distance, with EVs of all types struggling to manage their weight. Even though automakers place heavy battery packs low in the vehicle to improve the centre of gravity, it’s still a lot of mass to move around that can’t be easily covered up.
We imagine Audi will improve the stopping capability of future EVs even if Volkswagen Group CEO Oliver Blume believes the brand lags behind its rivals. The automaker has run into software issues, delaying vital plans and new electric vehicles. Audi will launch the Q6 E-Tron next year, joining the E-Tron GT saloon.