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Audi PB18 e-tron Concept-Audi's vision for supercars of the future

Audi has decided to use the Pebble Beach event to show the motoring world what a supercar of the future It's called the Audi PB18 e-tron Concept and it looks just as bonkers - if not more so - than Lamborghini's on-sale effort. It's party trick is that it can transport the owner from the door across the chassis to the central driving position. The seat, wheel and pedals all slide electrically into the middle of the car. Then when you want to get out, the seat can move back to the side again. Genius. Measuring in at four and a half metres long and two metres wide, it's an all-electric performance weapon with a greater footprint than today's Range Rovers. It will certainly be quicker than the rugged British 4x4s, though.

Using a trio of e-motors, one on the front axle and two on the rear, it produces a claimed 671bhp - more power than the Lamborghini Aventador SVJ's V12 petrol motor can churn out. It's faster to 62mph too, managing the feat in two seconds dead. To keep those electric motors running, they need a lot of juice. Feeding them is a 95kWh solid state battery, which uses regenerative systems to boost the range on the move. Under the latest emissions test cycle - called WLTP - it can cover 311 miles between charges, so Audi says. And it doesn't take long to replenish the battery packs.

With 800-volt compatibility, it can be fully charged in around 15 minutes. And charging can also be done wirelessly using inductive charging. Even with an electric drivetrain - which are excessively heavy - Audi has managed to trim it down to the weight of a family car, around one and a half tonnes. And as well as being fast and light, it's also pretty practical, in concept form anyway. It uses an extended body to create a svelte shooting brake - which traditionally is a two-door estate car - with as much boot space as a Volkswagen Tiguan SUV (470 litres). Being a concept, it's unlikely we're going to see this become a reality any time soon, though. But rest assured much of the technology will be fed into Audi's soon-to-be-released mainstream cars that the brand is due to launch in the next five years as part of a recover strategy from the embarrassment of the VW emissions cheating scandal.

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