Audi Reveals 2013 A8 Hybrid

Audi reveals the latest version of their flagship sedan: the A8 Hybrid, set for a public debut at the Frankfurt Auto Show.

Set for an official debut next month at the 2011 Frankfurt Auto Show, Audi has just released pictures and details of their upcoming A8 Hybrid. Due out sometime in 2012 as an early 2013 model, Audi claims it has the "power of a six-cylinder model, but the fuel consumption of a four-cylinder version." It's powered by an efficient hybrid system, made up of a 2.0-liter TFSI four-cylinder turbo gasoline engine which produces 211hp and 258 lb-ft of maximum torque along with an electric motor that produces an additional 54hp and 155 lb-ft.

The system together produces a total of 245hp and 345 lb-ft of torque, with average fuel consumption coming in at 36.75 US mpg. According to Audi's press release, in place of a torque converter, a magnet synchronous motor is mounted in the former's previous space in front of the modified eight-speed Tiptronic. A multi-plate clutch that operates in an oil bath connects or disconnects the electric motor and the TFSI engine. As a further step in the development of hybrid technology, the A8 flagship hybrid can travel at speeds of up to 62mph on electric power alone and can cover almost two miles with zero local emissions at a constant speed of 37mph.

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Audi claims it can go from 0 to 62mph in 7.7 seconds and has a top speed of 146 mph. Its lithium-ion battery, which weighs a respectable 81 lbs, is located in a crash-proof area in the trunk. Audi states that two different methods are used to air-cool the battery: blown air from the passenger compartment by a fan and via a separate cooling circuit couple to the automatic air conditioning system. Visually speaking, the A8 hybrid features standard 18-inch ten-spoke alloy wheels with optional 19-inchers. There are also various hybrid badges on the body and an optional Artic Silver metallic paint finish.

And thanks to Audi's ultra-lightweight construction abilities, the hybrid is one of the lightest sedans in its class due to its all-aluminum body. Official pricing and an exact on sale date haven't been announced.

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