Audi has released a software update for its first electric car, the e-tron SUV, which unlocks a slight increase in maximum range.
The upgrade cannot be done over the air, however. It is available for e-tron owners now and is free of charge. but only by visiting an Audi service centre.
Once installed, 2019 and 2020 build e-tron 55 quattro versions of the e-tron can travel a further 20km (12.5 miles) on a charge. As a result, the car can now do an official 441km (276 miles) on a charge according to WLTP homologation. The update applies only to 55 models with this size battery, and not the smaller battery e-tron 50 quattro. However, it is available for e-tron 55 Sportback cars too.
The company has achieved the increased range through an increase in the usable capacity of the e-tron 55’s 95kWh battery.
This increase in usable battery capacity is combined with software updates enabling more efficient decoupling of the electric motor at the car’s front axle. In effect, the motor remains disconnected from the drivetrain and powered off until maximum power is required. Until that point, the e-tron 55 quattro is rear-wheel-drive only.
The software update also makes the cooling of various electrical components more efficient, by reducing the flow rates in the cooling system, which in turn cuts energy consumption, all of which counts towards the greater overall range.
Maximum charge rates of 150kW remain as before, so when hooked up to a rapid charger the car can reach 80% in just 30 minutes. Similarly, it takes just 10 minutes to add 110km (70 miles) to the range.
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