Audi has formed an Artemis team to reorganise the way high-tech electric vehicles are developed, and the first example of this initiative is a luxury flagship model that can rival the best of Mercedes-Benz, BMW and other high-end brands,media reported. In May, Audi announced that Artemis was an experiment in fast tracking of electric vehicles, bypassing the current car development process and creating “a ground-breaking model.”
This is a “model” both from an automotive perspective and from a design and engineering perspective. Alex Hitzinger was in charge of Volkswagen’s self-driving car project, and previously worked on Apple’s self-driving car project. Artemis will have mass-owned hardware, software, engineering and design talent.
In the process, it will go hand in hand with VW’s existing electrification strategy — or, more accurately, directly through it. This is witness to the development of a universal electric vehicle platform like MEB, which will support everything from affordable hatchback electric vehicles such as ID.3 to more unusual prices such as the electric Microbus. Audi itself will also use MEB, but Artemis will have its own flexibility in how the technology will be implemented.
It is not yet clear when the car will arrive. According to Audi, it will be on the road as early as 2024, with the goal of an efficient electric vehicle that will rely heavily on highly automated driving technology.
According to Autocar’s sources, the car could end up being an Audi A9 e-tron. The car, called an electric luxury car, will follow the Aicon concept first explored by the company in 2017. In terms of positioning, it will be located on top of the A8 sedan.
According to the existing promotional materials, Aicon will own the Audi 5 self-driving, positioning high-end luxury four-door electric vehicles. The car will be fitted with a huge “first class” experience in its nearly 18-foot-long body. Entering through the front and rear hinged doors, the interior of the 2 plus 2 is more like a luxury salon, and the OLED touch screen control is integrated into a command belt withno-to-traditional steering wheel or pedals.
While the A9 e-tron is not expected to give up the physical control part so aggressively, that doesn’t mean it will be like other models in today’s Audi front yard. The car, which is believed to have an internal code name for the E6, is still in its early stages of development. The car is said to have the same size as the current Audi A7 – only 16 feet long – and features a sporty car or hatchback. However, thanks to the electric drivetrain, the interior is said to be closer to the size of the Audi A8.
It will also be a good opportunity for Audi to make a big impact on cutting-edge technology. This means that 5G and car-to-X communications and augmented reality features are likely to appear in the car in the future. In addition, Audi will support OTA updates, new features and the latest driver assistance technology.
It remains to be seen whether Artemis will be listed as a Company a9 e-tron in the future. However, the goal of these luxury carmakers is clear: to build a car with a high-tech aura.