Audi has been at the forefront of some of the boldest off-road concepts in recent years like its AI: Trail Quattro. Coalescing those blue-sky design forrays into production Audis has taken a while. But now we’ve got a preview of just that, a more production-based concept it plans on unveiling next month called the Audi Activesphere. The sort-of fastback/crossover off-roader looks bold, doable, and ready to capitalize on Audi’s off-road ambitions.
What we know about the Audi Activesphere concept
Audi’s active lifestyles mantra is getting louder with the first look at the Activesphere. Its all-electric power combines with level-four autonomous driving abilities. It follows on the heels of its AI: Trail Quattro, as well as its Skysphere, Urbansphere, and Grandsphere concepts.
Both the Urbansphere and Grandsphere share the same Audi PPE electric platform. We expect that the Activesphere will too. With its lifted stance and larger wheels and tires, we hope it will be Audi’s first shot into serious EV off-road adventure. Its current Q5 and Q7 already make inroads into luxury off-road capability.
Audi has said little about the Activesphere leading up to its January 26, 2023 Celebration of Progress event debut. But UK’s Autocar says Audi will have a higher battery capacity than 80kWh. That means over a 300-mile range. Its Urbansphere concept featured a 120 kWh battery, reaching a 466-mile range.
How much power does the Audi Activesphere have?
How much power will launch the Activesphere is not known at this time. But its Urbansphere concept packed almost 400 hp, while its Grandsphere concept bested that with over 700 hp.
Audi’s off-road prowess goes back over 40 years. Its Quattro all-wheel-drive technology laid the groundwork for forays into harsh off-roading. It won numerous World Rally Championships throughout the 1980s, transitioning to be responsible for the more recent 24 Hour of Le Mans R18 e-Tron Quattro wins.
How does the EV system tie into the Quattro all-wheel-drive?
The e-Tron Quattro will become the basis for future Audi EV accomplishments. It features a motor in front and another in the back, hooked to a one-speed transmission. “The Quattro system is designed for rear-biased performance and is able to react to changing traction conditions and driver inputs quicker than its internal-combustion counterparts,” says Audi. The rear motor is also configured to regenerate energy for the batteries.
Audi took a huge leap into the off-roading future when it debuted its AI: Trail Quattro concept in 2019. Fancifully blue sky, it was part off-road, part dune buggy, and all outlandishly delightful. Though never expected to be close to anything we’d see in production, it first signaled Audi’s move into more aggressive off-road pursuits, but all-electric powered.
Though only teaser shots, the Activesphere looks much more production and off-road-ready. Audi never disappoints in its exploration of new themes and segments to conquer. We are hoping that we’re seeing a near production-ready Audi to thrash about the rocks and sand in the very near future.