Audi has at last confirmed that it will put its special R8 e-tron electric supercar into production, but customer demand will dictate the number of units built.
Speaking at the company’s annual press briefing this week, development boss Ulrich Hackenberg confirmed that improvements to the e-tron technology had moved the company to finally sign off on a limited production run.
Among the model’s improvements are an extended driving range, with the electric supercar now capable of travelling up to 450 kilometres between charges - around double its previous capability.
Hackenberg’s comments are just the latest in the project’s seesaw history, with more than a few reports since the R8 e-tron’s 2009 debut suggesting it would (then wouldn’t, then would) see production.
And while a full production series will never occur, Hackenberg said this week that the R8 e-tron will be made available to approved customers, with construction of each car beginning only once an order has been placed.
The R8 e-tron’s long development history however means that a proper next-generation production model is likely, to be sold alongside the company’s conventional petrol offerings.
Hackenberg told press this week that the next-generation R8 supercar, due next year, will likely also benefit from experience gained with the e-tron, including its innovative weight-saving construction features.
Other technical advances, such as brake-by-wire rear braking, are also expected to appear in the next R8 model.