Audi Bumps Up The Sportiness With 496 HP e-tron S And e-tron S Sportback

Plethora of changes turn Audi’s EV SUVs into high-riding electric sports cars.

Audi has just revealed the souped up versions of its new e-tron and e-tron Sportback, called e-tron S and e-tron S Sportback. They’ve both been given the same treatment with the aim of making them faster, better handling, sportier looking and more special to be in and drive.

Has it been a successful makeover? Well, neither model was what one might call boring to look at, but now the exterior look has been cranked up to eleven, with a 50 millimeter (2-inch) wider body (thanks to enlarged wheel arches, complimented by new bumpers). The grille up front is also different and unique to the S models, while at the rear a big diffuser completes the look.

According to Audi, this exterior makeover isn’t just cosmetic. The wheel arch extensions apparently help with aerodynamics and allow the e-tron S Sportback to achieve a drag coefficient of 0.26, while the e-tron S manages a still impressive 0.28 cd. Both models also feature cooling ducts that feed air to the brakes which stay closed until they are needed.

The interior is left pretty much unchanged, but they do come finished in darker colors (to enhance the sporty feel), as well as a smattering of S badges throughout the cabin in order to drive the point home.

Gallery: Audi e-tron S

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Both S models pack almost 100 more horsepower compared to non-S models, with an output of 496 horsepower and 973 Nm (717 pound-feet) of torque. This is achieved by adding an extra electric motor to power the rear axle – they have a tri-motor setup and are almost a second faster to sprint to 100km/h, at 4.5 seconds, and top speed is increased by 10 km/h (6 mph) to 209 km/h (130 mph).

Another performance-enhancing feature these two S models have is torque vectoring. This also comes courtesy of having two motors powering the rear axle, so the vehicle can essentially very precisely regulate how much power each wheel receives and it can make much finer (and quicker) adjustments than could have ever been possible through a conventional differential.

Gallery: Audi e-tron S Sportback

12 Photos

Expect to see the e-tron S and e-tron S Sportback hit European showrooms this fall, starting at €93,800 ($105,245) and €96,050 ($107,800) respectively.

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