A High-Performance Audi e-tron Sportback S is Coming — And It Will Drift!

Audi has hinted at the addition of a sportier “e-tron S” ever since the original e-tron made its debut. However, now we not only know that it’s real and almost here but we know it will drift. The folks at Top Gear were given a go in the upcoming Audi e-tron Sportback S (we’re not sure if a standard e-tron S is in the works) and were told to take turn down the traction control and smoke some tires.


It’s not often you see Audis of any kind doing big, smokey drifts, as their sensible Quattro all-wheel drive systems usually sort that kind of thing out. The only real driftable Audi is the R8 because that’s rear-biased. So to think of an Audi doing hilarious, tire-scorching drifts is actually refreshing. Especially when it’s an e-tron doing them, as anyone who’s driven the e-tron will tell you, it’s not the most thrilling of cars to drive.

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So how can this Audi e-tron Sportback S drift? Well, it’s been given a bit of a re-think to its electric motor setup. Rather than having one big electric motor at the rear axle and one small one at the front, the e-tron Sportback S gets one big one at the front and two little ones at the back. This can provide either a 50/50 torque split, front-to-rear, in Comfort mode or up to a 10/90 torque split, respectively, in Dynamic Mode. Additionally, those two rear-mounted motors can provide live torque-vectoring without the need for a differential. So they can easily provide smokey drifts with ease.


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More than that, though, it’s actually more fun to drive. The additional motor bumps power up to 502 hp and 717 lb-ft of torque, up from the standard car’s 402 hp and 490 lb-ft. So 0-60 mph drops to 4.5 seconds, more than a second quicker than the standard car. Plus, with the extra rear motor and torque vectoring, it corners sharper and feels more dynamic than ever before.


So if you’re looking for an electric Audi but think the e-tron is too boring, go for the Audi e-tron Sportback S. It will flipping drift.


[Source: Top Gear]
Nico DeMattia

I've been in love with cars since I was a kid, specifically German cars. Now I get to drive them talk about them on the internet.