Automotive parts maker Schaeffler may have built its name on bearings, but the company has been steadily increasing its expertise in the development of electric powertrains, as a technology partner in Porsche’s World Endurance Championship (WEC) effort and the Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler Formula E team. Now, Schaeffler is putting all that expertise in the new 4ePerformance concept.
Schaeffler has built a crazy new all-electric vehicle by adding a battery pack and 4 Formula E electric motors to an Audi RS3 in order to create an 880 kW all-electric racing car.
The car’s four electric motors are identical in specification to the one used in the 2016/17 ABT Schaeffler FE01 Formula E car, which was driven by Lucas di Grassi and won the series title before the racing outfit was taken over by Audi (hence the use of an RS3 for the concept). Each motor produces up to 295bhp and 236lb ft of torque.
Described by Schaeffler as a showcase for how quickly high-performance electric drive technology can be integrated into a series production model, the 4ePerformance can accelerate to 124mph in less than seven seconds — that will make it at least six-tenths quicker than the upcoming Ferrari 488 Pista’s time of 7.6sec.
Schaeffler 4ePerformance has an electric motor on each wheel. A gearbox at each axle controls two electric motors, and this setup allows for torque vectoring to tweak the cornering in the middle of a curve. Separate batteries at the front and rear provide a total output of 64 kilowatt hours.
And, if you look at this car, you will understand that Schaeffler did not end up using one electrification when working on RS3. A new special body kit with “flared” front and rear wheel arches, a new front bumper with a completely different grille and other air intakes were developed for this concept car.