An interesting sporty drivetrain, fitted to the wrong car. Impressive, but other E-trons are better bets
In the early stages of this new era of the electric car, so much of the talk is around numbers, and how big they are. Range, battery size, power and torque levels, price… Now Audi has added another larger number to its new E-tron S Sportback: a third electric motor.The new car, launched alongside a new S version of the existing E-tron at the same time, adds one extra motor over the E-tron 55 Sportback that sits below it in the range.In the E-tron S Sportback, a large electric motor powers the front axle and there are twin smaller motors at the rear, allowing torque vectoring and fully variable torque distribution between the rear wheels for a promised increase in agility.The presence of three motors, of course, means plenty of power and torque: 429bhp and 596lb ft all in, or 496bhp and a mighty 718lb ft in an overboost function in Sport mode.Such hefty reserves require an equally hefty battery to draw their power from. In the E-tron S Sportback’s case, it’s a 95kWh lithium ion battery that’s good for a typical 226 miles.