Audi expands range of older e-tron electric SUVs with software update

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Audi has announced a new software update that will expand the range of older e-tron electric SUVs by increasing efficiency.

Several historic automakers venturing into electric vehicles ended up having large battery “pads” on their early electric vehicles.

A battery buffer is the difference between the net energy capacity of the battery and its usable capacity.

They worried about the safety and degradation of the battery, but many were too careful and ended up hurting their vehicle’s efficiency by having it carry a battery with a large part that it cannot use.

Audi was one of them, and it’s starting to release more power capacity into those batteries.

Today, the German automaker announced that it is making the software update available for the Audi e-tron of the 2019 and 2020 model years:

Owners of an Audi e-tron from the 2019 or 2020 model years can now travel further on a single charge – a new software update will extend their car’s range by up to an additional 20 kilometers. This means that Audi does not limit efficiency increases to new models, but also increases the efficiency of cars already on the road.

Audi says the e-tron 55 can now travel up to 441 km based on the WLTP standard following the update:

Along with the e-tron Sportback premiere, Audi rolled out a technology update at the end of 2019 with improved range for its first series of electric models. As a result, the current model year Audi e-tron 55 quattro can travel up to 441 kilometers on a single battery charge (WLTP cycle). In addition to the modified hardware, the optimized software was the main factor contributing to the increase in the range.

The controller notes that the longest range is mainly obtained by increasing the usable capacity of the 95 kWh pack to 86 kWh:

As of today, the software features that drive this efficiency improvement are also available for existing vehicles. Among other improvements, the update expands the usable capacity of the high-voltage battery. As a result, the 95 kWh battery in the Audi e-tron 55 quattro delivers more net useful power – a capacity of 86 kWh therefore translates into increased range. The software update for all Audi e-tron 55 quattro1 Production vehicles built between mid-September 2018 (2019 model year) and late November 2019 (2020 model year) can now be installed free of charge at Audi service partners.

While this is probably where most of the new lineup arrives, Audi also claims that it has improved engine efficiency and thermal management:

In addition to the battery capacity, the new software also optimizes the control of the front electric motor. In normal driving mode, the engine attached to the rear axle is responsible for propulsion. For improved efficiency, the front electric motor is now almost completely disconnected and turned off – and it is only when more power is needed that both motors come into play. This makes it possible to exploit the major advantage of the engine even more efficiently. asynchronous motor concept, i.e. currentless operation without electrical drag losses.

In addition, the update also improves cooling. The highly flexible thermal management system, consisting of four separate circuits, regulates the temperature of high voltage components even more effectively. The modification of the control system made it possible to reduce the volume flow rates in the cooling circuit, thus reducing energy consumption. The cooling system is the basis for fast DC charging, long battery life and consistent driving performance even under high loads.

The update is now available to owners and can only be installed at Audi service centers and not via an over-the-air software update.

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