Audi A3 E-tron

cemerson

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So the technology behind the batteries on this scale is still in its infancy, what do you expect? The point is, things will get better as they become more popular and manufacturing processes, efficiency and materials improve over time. Don't you find it pretty amazing that a technology that is in its infancy is already on a par with the 100-year-old current method of making transport? It's pretty obvious to anyone who knows anything about the sector that things will improve over time, and the gap will widen massively.

In any case, they have also missed the point that dead Lithium Ion batteries are already 97% recyclable (something like that anyway, not sure on the exact figure. High 90s), which means disposing of them doesn't mean introducing nasty chemicals back into the environment anyway, AND the article doesn't make any distinction between environmental concerns and energy future concerns - the EV solves both while they only talk about one (which is solvable anyway).

The fact that they put in a bit of scare-mongering about fires in lithium ion batteries tells me all I need to know about the author's biased viewpoint!
 

steeve

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An interesting article.
http://www.waste-management-world.c.../the-lithium-battery-recycling-challenge.html

There is no doubt the future is EV vehicles. The EPA is currently unsure about the sustainability of battery powered vehicles charged from the grid.
The future would seem to be hydrogen based vehicles and the future for these is considered bright. However the rush to go to grid charged EV's would seem by various experts to be taking necessary concentration and research attention from hydrogen cell development.
 

cemerson

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Hydrogen doesn't solve any of the problems though. It's massively expensive, requires huge amounts of energy to produce, and is far behind advancements in battery technologies. There is a saying "Hydrogen fuel cells are the future... and always will be". They won't catch up now.

The oil companies will all promote it though as it's something they can produce (Shell do for example), and will also spread FUD on battery powered EVs too, but I don't really see why hydrogen would ever be chosen over a battery powered vehicle. Initial cost, running costs, maintenance, energy usage, safety, even environmental concerns (think of the amount of fuel burned to extract hydrogen, store it safely and transport it across the country...) are all worse with Hydrogen.

One (very sensible) suggested use for 'end of life' batteries that become too difficult to recycle (IF they become too difficult to recycle) is local storage at the home/buildng level, so they can be charged when there is an excess on the grid and used to fill the shortfalls. Enough of these batteries around the country would do wonders to help smooth the grid demands, and is a really good use of the tech once it can't drive a car any more (if it happens).

Having driven the Model S the other day, I'm convinced it's the future of personal transportation (however much some people will moan about it being not right or not ready for them). Given that is the first car Tesla have made, it's pretty amazing, and only going to get better the more money they put into it in my view. Also, with them opening up all their patents for other manufacturers to use (lets face it, not many other manufacturers put that much effort into EV research - they are just doing it because they feel they have to, for show or to meet environmental targets).
 

h5djr

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In Germany Audi also sell a g-tron version of the A3 which runs on e-gas whatever than is.

Maybe EVs are the future, when someone has worked out how we are going to cleanly generate all the extra electricity to power all these EVs, but I think the main method of powering cars, lorries and buses will remain petrol and diesel for many years to come and certainly within my lifetime.

In my opinion cars still have a long way to go before I would ever consider purchasing one.
 

Vertigo1

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Whether or not global warming is "real" or, if it is, to what extent man has contributed to it, isn't really the issue IMHO. Personally I feel that, whatever we try to do now, it's just too little, too late to make any real difference. As long as industrialising countries such as China continue to belch out greenhouse gasses, any reductions we make will be insignificant by comparison.

Also, consider that the eruption of Mount St.Helens pumped more CO2 into the atmosphere than the entire industrial revolution. Puts man's contribution into perspective and, even if we drastically reduced our global CO2 production, one more eruption like that would undo it all.
 

cemerson

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The Challinor

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30 mile all electric range....
 

h5djr

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When someone comes up with a way to use electric power that is entirely generated from 'non fossil fuels' and we have all cars, lorries, buses, coaches and probably most importantly aircraft running on electric power then I don't think a few Audi A3 e-tons which make much difference. In the UK alone 77% of our electricity is generated using fossil fuels (gas and coal) with 14% by nuclear and 5.5% from renewable (according to an on-line article from The Guardian) we have an long way to go. If the were many more electric and hybrid cars around we would need even more generating capacity.

If an A3 e-tron makes financial sense for the lifestyle of an individual the fine and they are happy to accept the limitations of that model then fine but I don't think it will make any difference one way or the other to the planet as a whole. I also object to every e-tron or other EV being subsidised to the tune of £5,000 from tax payers. If someone thinks an e-tron is a good idea let them pay the full cost.

Personally I will continue to prefer my diesel 184 quattro or similar for the foreseeable future.
 

cemerson

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I think your figures are out of date. Recently, renewables (especially wind power) have been out-supplying coal in this country. Plus, you are using the same tired argument that many anti-EV people use - that all our electricity comes from burning coal so it doesn't matter... which is wrong. For a start, your electricity doesn't come from any particular power stations, it comes from the grid, which has many different supplies, with renewables getting more and more of that job recently. Even then, I am with Ecotricity so all my electricity is 100% renewable anyway, so also wrong there.

The point of the government subsidy is to get people onto these vehicles, because they are proven to help with emissions and energy use (that's proven, not some bloke's opinion). If they didn't work, the subsidy wouldn't be there!

I can't wait to rid myself of burning dead dinosaurs to move myself around, and if some people want to stay in the last century and continue to do this, then fine - but they are part of an ever smaller group and hopefully one day will be gone.
 

h5djr

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I think you figures must be out of date as well because below are the figures from the Government statistics website and dated 31 July 2014, showing the power generation figures for 2013.

Primary and secondary production (GWh)
Nuclear 70,608
Hydro 4,698
Wind, wave and solar photovoltaics 30,475
Coal 130,768
Oil 2,135
Gas 95,612
Other renewables 18,494
Other 3,462
Total production 356,253

As you can see from the figures Coal (130,768) is currently the main method of generating electricity in the UK, followed by Gas (95.612) and then Nuclear (70,608). Wind, wave and solar photovoltaics(30,475) are less than 25% of that produced by Coal and less than 10% of the total overall figure.

I am no 'eco warrior' but I do contribute by generating electricity from solar panels on the roof of my house because for the simple reason that it is financial a good investment for me personally. I also volunteer quite a bit of my time for a national nature conservation charity.

If an A3 e-tron (with a larger tax payer funded subsidy) makes financial sense to an individual the by all means buy one but I just feel that the idea that a hybrid car like the A3 e-tron which will run most of it's miles using petrol as it's fuel will make any contribution to the so called 'global warming' is rather silly.
 

h5djr

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I think you figures must be out of date as well because below are the figures from the Government statistics website and dated 31 July 2014, showing the power generation figures for 2013.

Primary and secondary production (GWh)
Nuclear 70,608
Hydro 4,698
Wind, wave and solar photovoltaics 30,475
Coal 130,768
Oil 2,135
Gas 95,612
Other renewables 18,494
Other 3,462
Total production 356,253

As you can see from the figures Coal (130,768) is currently the main method of generating electricity in the UK, followed by Gas (95.612) and then Nuclear (70,608). Wind, wave and solar photovoltaics(30,475) are less than 25% of that produced by Coal and less than 10% of the total overall figure.

I am no 'eco warrior' but I do contribute by generating electricity from solar panels on the roof of my house because for the simple reason that it is financial a good investment for me personally. I also volunteer quite a bit of my time for a national nature conservation charity.

If an A3 e-tron (with a larger tax payer funded subsidy) makes financial sense to an individual the by all means buy one but I just feel that the idea that a hybrid car like the A3 e-tron which will run most of it's miles using petrol as it's fuel will make any contribution to the so called 'global warming' is rather silly.
 

cemerson

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cemerson

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These are very recent figures, the increase in wind turbines (which I'm now proud to be part funding through my electricity plan) and recent strong wind has a large effect. Coal is on the decrease all the time, and will continue to decline in favour of other methods.
 

h5djr

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I will believe it when I see it published on a government website. There are far too many vested interests in this debate. I agree the use of Coal as a means of power should be reduced but I don't think wind power (unless it's all the hot air that comes from campaigners) is the answer. Holland was a early adopter of wind power and it has now decided that wind turbines are no longer viable and will not fund any more. The are also many wind turbines in Germany, most in rural area a what used to be pleasant countryside until they appeared. Wind power from turbines out to sea, may be, but not on land.

But that still does not change my view that an A3 e-tron is not a viable car for many owners, me included. It will not make zero impression on the planet as it will still be using petrol for any journey over 31 miles. When someone comes up with a car drive system that can do around 400 miles and recharge in 5 minutes then we will be getting somewhere. Sorry we already have one - it called the internal combustion engine running on petrol or diesel:)
 
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cemerson

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I'm not really sure how the green lobby can be called 'vested interest'. What would their motive be?

Holland aren't cutting wind power at all, they are cutting the subsidies. All this proves is that wind power is a very sustainable and affordable technology now. Fossil fuel power generation in this country (especially nuclear energy) in this country is subsidised off the chart compared to renewables - something most people don't realise.

As for wind turbines... I'll live next door to one any day over living next door to a coal/nuclear monstrosity. I think they are quite beautiful to look at and watch!
 

The Challinor

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Chill guys lol
 

h5djr

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Whatever the so called facts are figures are for electricity generation, nothing would ever convince me to by a car that would cost at least £2,000 more than my present A3 and that would have a lot less power and performance so lets leave it there.

If you think one will suit your lifestyle then by all means buy one. I'll stick to a much more powerful 184 quattro and enjoy driving it and save the £2,000. Every car I have purchased over the last 40 years has been a step up from my previous car and I certainly don't intend to start going backwards.
 

monkeyhanger

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The main thing to consider here is - if the government or the car companies can slap you with an extra "environmental" (conscience) tax then they most certainly will. If you swap you car every 3 years and the E-tron will cost you £5k more than the equivalent petrol/diesel only model with similar performance and spec, you're not going to see your conscience premium returned to you. Is it any coincidence that all the electric cars cost about £5k more than they should, because they know the government £5k subsidy will even out the price?

I'm of the opinion that most of the global changes we see are natural, and we have a small influence on making it worse if we're pretty responsible with our emissions. We can be as clean as we like but if India/China/South Korea have dirty industrial processes then we're not going to be able to avoid the damage. As above from Coddy. If a team of financially led Scientists have an agenda to prove something, they will ignore any mitigating evidence to the contrary, if they can get away with it.
 

h5djr

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In my particular case the A3 e-tron would actually cost me £7,000 more without the government subsidy for a lot less performance and handling than my present diesel 184 quattro. Makes no financial sense at all.
 

cemerson

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If a team of financially led Scientists have an agenda to prove something, they will ignore any mitigating evidence to the contrary, if they can get away with it.

Which financially led scientists? I'm not sure you understand much about how science and research funding works, but the funding isn't dependent on the results that are obtained.
 

Audimad

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I was going to order one until i found out that i could not get one from Crewe Audi but i could get one from Stoke Audi, i would NOT use Stoke after they damaged my S3.
 

h5djr

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Which financially led scientists? I'm not sure you understand much about how science and research funding works, but the funding isn't dependent on the results that are obtained.

That can depend on who is paying for the research. In some cases if a company is paying for research and the results do not say what they want then the results do not get published. Even the government is guilty of that sometimes.
Also just about every piece of research that is done on almost any subject always ends with the comment "more research will be needed" which in my opinion is there to keep those involved with a job.
 

h5djr

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I was going to order one until i found out that i could not get one from Crewe Audi but i could get one from Stoke Audi, i would NOT use Stoke after they damaged my S3.

Yes it seems that not all Audi dealers can supply them. My normal dealer is not on the list which is another good reason for me not to consider one unless things change by the time I come to purchase my next car.
 

monkeyhanger

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Which financially led scientists? I'm not sure you understand much about how science and research funding works, but the funding isn't dependent on the results that are obtained.

Government backed or company backed. The may not outright lie about an outcome, but they can design an experiment that does lean towards their hypothesis by ignoring certain variables or relevant avenues of additional research which may fully or partially mitigate the initial findings. Or they can choose only to publish the headline grabbing parts of their research. I know a fair bit about Science, I have an MSc in Biotechnology. I know plenty about clinical trials and adverse effects of drugs, as I work in that area of the pharmaceutical industry. You can act unethically and skew the results of a clinical trial by certain selection of your trial patients, ignore or play down the importance of side effects or outlying results, or just only look as far into the potential negatives as is minimally required by regulation. Experimental shaping and variable interpretation/omission of certain data can be applied for other fields of science. If you have a project backed with staged funding and you can manipulate the data to say what you want it to say if it will progress your project to the next tier. We have seen this happen in big Pharma, such as Accomplia/Ribonabant - the anti-depressant/anti-obesity drug which can make people more likely to act on suicidal thoughts. This was known to the manufacturers when they released the product, and it was finally withdrawn after the FDA refused to approve it and the EMA back-pedalled on it's approval some time later.

We are constantly getting told that electric cars are the future, and we should buy one ASAP. No CO2 emissions, the motors last much longer than engines with minimal maintenance etc. They neglect to tell the uninitiated that most electricity which will power those electric vehicles is still generated by the burning of fossil fuels and still will be for the forseeable, they neglect to mention the toxicity of the rare earths and other minerals that go into the battery packs , the environmental impact of the battery manufacturing process, that the battery will only do about 2/3 of it's published range in real life driving situations, that the battery will be nigh-on useless after 6 years due to it's diminished range.....
 

monkeyhanger

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I was going to order one until i found out that i could not get one from Crewe Audi but i could get one from Stoke Audi, i would NOT use Stoke after they damaged my S3.

Buy off Stoke and then sever all ties and go to Crewe/elsewhere for servicing and warranty work.
 
G

Gordo77

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Yes it seems that not all Audi dealers can supply them. My normal dealer is not on the list which is another good reason for me not to consider one unless things change by the time I come to purchase my next car.

Yes, apparently the dealers supplying them are in areas of higher population. My contact at Carlisle Audi confirmed this, as they are not a supplying dealer.
 

cemerson

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Also just about every piece of research that is done on almost any subject always ends with the comment "more research will be needed" which in my opinion is there to keep those involved with a job.

And yet all involved agree that it is happening... if they were motivated to give the impression more research is needed, it'd be much more contentious an issue than it is.

As it is though, the jury is in and the evidence shows what is happening.

There are far too many already-debunked myths about EVs, power supplies etc in this thread for my liking, tells me exactly what the evidence assessment skills of those pushing them forwards are - I'm not going to continue in this discussion any more, in case it goes off topic further!
 

jetron

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I ordered mine from Camberley Audi as they provided excellent service when I bought my previous vehicle. Yes, there are other dealerships or "e-tron Centres" where you could purchase one, a total of 34 in the UK, but the sales executive with whom I am dealing has provided me with all the feedback requested to-date.

I chose the e-tron because the local VW dealership couldn't provide me with any information on the GTE which shares most of the e-tron's systems. I was invited by Audi for a day out at Ragley Hall in Warwickshire, which enabled me to drive the vehicle, albeit a pre-production LHD model, as well as ask questions to the team of e-tron specialists, some of which had been involved with the design of the e-tron concept.

As far as comparisons go, I could only compare it against an A3 1.8 TFSI or the BMW i3 and in both cases it was my preferred vehicle.

With a 30 mile range, if meets my daily commute requirement as well as proividing the range for longer weekend driving. There are more and more charging stations springing up these days, so much so, that one developing problem is the management of a collection of charge cards. This will not be much of an issue for myself as I plan to charge at home for the most part. I availed of the Government grant to have a charging station installed when I had my solar panels installed and plan to charge using solar PV as much as possible.

With the current long lead time in production, rather than take delivery at the end of January or in February, I have asked for delivery on a "15" plate. This may help when it comes to resale, but as I plan to hold onto it for 5+ years, this may not be an issue. Let me find out what the build week is first of all.

For those interested, the main brochure is now available from the Audi UK website. I had been working with the Audi.de brochures for a while, but there are subtle differences in build option availability.

As far as protecting the environment and conserving natural resources are concerned, I believe that Audi is playing its part as much as if not more so than many manufacturers. You can view Audi's side of the debate here http://www.audi.com/corporate/en/corporate-responsibility/we-live-responsibility/environment.html
 

cemerson

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Sounds great! What spec did you go for?
 
D

deci

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If you're buying to be green then it's misguided, and that's that.

For fuel economy, then beware of real world mpg. It's a big premium over a standard 1.4 A3. If you're buying for a commuting 30miles a day then you're likely doing <10k a year. Is that enough miles to see the benefit of paying the premium?

I think the technology will be better utilised in audis further up the chain, like a TT or R8 where a few grand extra isn't such a higher percentage of the outlay.
 

cemerson

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I commute 30 miles a day and do 18,000 miles a year!
 

jetron

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Sounds great! What spec did you go for?
As the base spec is very high, I only added lumbar support Milano leather to the sports seats, storage and luggage package, non smoking package, aluminium roof rails, electrically adjustable folding door mirrors and of course, the Scuba blue paint. The configurator provided these images, although they don't do justice to the Scuba blue paint...
etron 2.jpg etron 3.jpg etron 4.jpg etron.jpg
 

jetron

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If you're buying to be green then it's misguided, and that's that.

For fuel economy, then beware of real world mpg. It's a big premium over a standard 1.4 A3. If you're buying for a commuting 30miles a day then you're likely doing <10k a year. Is that enough miles to see the benefit of paying the premium?

I think the technology will be better utilised in audis further up the chain, like a TT or R8 where a few grand extra isn't such a higher percentage of the outlay.
Just for the record, I'm not buying to be green. I'm buying because I like the e-tron. Yes, there may be other benefits like low insurance grouping (14?), zero congestion charge, zero VED etc.
 

cemerson

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As the base spec is very high, I only added lumbar support Milano leather to the sports seats, storage and luggage package, non smoking package, aluminium roof rails, electrically adjustable folding door mirrors and of course, the Scuba blue paint. The configurator provided these images, although they don't do justice to the Scuba blue paint...
View attachment 39458 View attachment 39459 View attachment 39460 View attachment 39461

I know, my A3 is Scuba blue! Great colour. Mine does need a wash though...
 

jetron

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As I mentioned in another post, I viewed a multitude of A3s all lined up in the sunshine and the ones in Scuba blue was the most pleasing to my eye. I am not a fan of grey or white and wanted a change from my previous silver A4. Most of the e-trons I have seen so far have been in Misano pearl which is a bit too much in your face for my liking but to each his/her own. The base spec already provides full LED lighting, Drive Select, MMI Navigation plus, Audi Connect, AMI, rear parking system, advanced key and a multitude of other toys so taking delivery may take some time. With just over two hours charging to fill the battery, I may not be visiting the petrol station very often, but so long as I can get 20-30 miles per charge I'll be satisfied.
 

a3_phil

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Hmm, having seen the basic spec I'm less interested in it than I was.

Bit annoyed that they've added so much in as standard as there are things in there (LED lights, MMI Nav, Audi Connect, Advanced Key) that I'm just not interested in and wouldn't use. I'd much rather they drop the basic spec and let you add the options again in the normal fashion.

I understand that the charging app requires the groundwork from the MMI Nav / Audi Connect but it's a little annoying to add in several thousand pounds of options that you may not need.

Here's hoping that future versions will simply be an engine choice alongside petrol and TDI which you can then spec as SE/Sport/S-Line and add options as required to.
 

cemerson

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They've probably added these things in as they cost Audi comparatively little while adding a lot more value to the car, to offset the higher price of the Hybrid. I suspect that's why anyway. So removing those options from the base spec wouldn't change the price that much.
 

h5djr

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I commute 30 miles a day and do 18,000 miles a year!

In that case I for one would be interested in the overall mpg for an e-tron compared with the same mileage done in a ordinary 1.4 TFSI with less weight to move (1540 to 1235kg). No one seems to be able to come up with these figures at the moment.
 

cemerson

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It's too difficult to give those figures as it would entirely depend on your personal circumstances, how much mileage you do on individual journeys and your charge cycle. The tests they do for the official figures are a bit of a joke, but until they come up with a representative test that everyone can follow, you aren't going to be able to compare.
 
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