Hybrids & Electrics

Audi Is Aiming to Fix the Most Annoying Part About Owning an EV

As much push as there is in trying to increase the American populace to buy electric cars, one reason may be to blame for them not going mainstream. Many people find it too inconvenient to charge their vehicles, often taking too long compared to a gas fill-up. Some electric car manufacturers are taking note of this, finally, and starting to enact new features to make charging a faster process. Audi is one of the leaders now in fixing this issue.

For those interested in buying an EV soon, it pays to look at Audi’s superior electric car lineup.

Audi’s entrance into the EV industry

Despite charging stations being ubiquitous across America, the charging process itself can take multiple hours to complete if running the battery low. On average, a car with a 60kWh battery will take eight hours to fully charge from empty to full.

Rapid chargers are available, of course, making it possible to charge in shorter amounts of time. However, the bigger the battery is, the longer it takes to charge throughout the day.

With so many people in a hurry nowadays, this was not acceptable. Now Audi is stepping in to create some better technology through a thermal management system.

When Audi got into the EV market, it received considerable notice with the Audi e-tron. Since the first editions last year, improvements in engineering are now being made to give 10 percent more efficiency in charging and performance.

A look at Audi’s thermal management system

RELATED: Audi’s First Electric SUV is a Winner, But it Has One Fatal Flaw

In basic terms, Audi’s thermal technology means the liquid-cooled slated frame located under the battery modules had a redesign. Thanks to a new conductive heating adhesive gel, it allows heat to transfer to the cooling system in a more balanced way, according to Car and Driver. As such, it provides a more efficient way to charge, including slightly faster charging times.

Audi is still not making claims its technology will create super fast charging. It just means it will likely provide a 10 percent improvement in charging time and range efficiency compared to last year’s models.

Heating makes all the difference in how long a battery in an EV stays charged. As Car and Driver notes: “A cooler battery while charging can accept its maximum charging capacity (in this case 150 kW) for [a] longer amount of time.

Typically, when a vehicle plugs into a charging station, it ramps up to its highest charging capacity but can slowly lose the ability to maintain that rate due to the heat generated by the process. Audi says that its system creates more of a plateau, with the dropoff being far more gradual than others.” 

If Audi denies any super-charging ability, evidence suggests its new technology will bring full charges in less than 45 minutes.

New battery tech will arrive in the 2021 models

Due to COVID-19, these new battery enhancements became delayed in Audi’s e-tron for this year. Now, everyone will have to wait for the 2021 edition, including the Audi e-tron Sportsback.

Both of these cars are Audi’s star vehicles in its EV selection. Consumer Reports gave a glowing review to the SUV edition last year, including noting it as a real treat to drive.

They did note back then it took 13 hours to fully charge this unique model – something soon to look outdated in another year. Will it change the public’s perception of EVs as viable cars to travel in? It obviously will take another couple of years before seeing what the impact from these new 2021 models brings.

One thing for sure is that if it was just the charging issue keeping people from buying electric cars, the middle of this decade may see a resurgence of EVs on the nation’s roads.