Audi Prologue Avant Concept showcases practical panache
Offering a more utilitarian take on the striking design of the Prologue Concept Coupe revealed in Los Angeles, the follow-up Audi Prologue Avant Concept takes its turn in the limelight at Geneva. While sharing all of the fundamental exterior and interior styling cues as well as aluminum-intensive construction and Quattro all-wheel with its predecessor, this wonder wagon features a different take on a future plug-in drivetrain.
Like the Coupe, the Avant Concept boasts a bold front fascia, elegantly aggressive body sculpting and full LED lighting - including Audi's Matrix Laser technology headlamps. However, the Avant adds new accent lamps that frame its front air intakes and a redrawn lower rear valance panel to complement its more formal roofline. Although slightly larger overall and with a second set of doors and a rear hatch, the Avant Concept rides on the same 117.7-inch wheelbase and wraps its 285/30 tires around new 22-inch alloy wheels.
While its fundamental color theme differs - here, aluminum and dark ash veneer are teamed with Lifestyle Blue and Sarder Brown - the Avant also boasts the same Virtual Cockpit instrumentation and state-of-the-art infotainment systems with brilliant OLED display screens introduced on the Prologue Coupe. In addition to the three screens up front, the array includes a console-mounted display for the two rear passengers as well as individually removable tablets that are affixed to the front-seat backrests as they are in the new Q7.
Production-ready diesel-electric power
The Prologue Avant Concept's chassis employs the Coupe's underpinnings, matching a sport-tuned adaptive air suspension with dynamic all-wheel steering and huge 20-inch carbon-ceramic disc brakes. However, in place of the Prologues Coupe's gasoline-fired 4.0-liter turbocharged V8 with mild-hybrid assist that makes 605 horsepower, the Avant features a diesel-electric alternative that's also fully production ready. Virtually identical to the setup slated for the new Q7 e-tron Quattro that's due to launch this summer, the Avant's motivation comes from a 3.0-liter TDI V6 that makes 348 horses and a 134-horsepower electric motor integrated into the 8-speed Tiptronic automatic transmission. This pairing raises the collective pony count to 449 and develops 553 lb-ft of torque.
Audi says the Avant will streak from 0-62 mph in 5.1 seconds on the way up to an electronically limited top speed of 155 mph. The motor is fed by a 14.1kWh lithium-ion battery that holds enough charge enabling the Prologue wagon to travel 33.6 mile in EV mode. And with the Audi wireless charging (AWC) being developed for production, battery replenishment can be done either by conventional plug-in or by parking the Prologue Avant Concept over a floor-mounted inductive charging plate.
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