At the Frankfurt Auto Show last September, Audi revealed an entirely-electric SUV, the Q6 E-Tron. Destined to take the fight to eh Tesla Model X, Audi claimed 500 kilometres of full-EV operation, thanks to a massive 95 kWh battery. Power is a claimed 435 horsepower.
Today in Detroit, hydrogen was the word of the day on the Audi stand, after the German manufacturer revealed the Q6 H-Tron concept. As you’ve probably guessed, the “H” stands for nature’s most abundant element, hydrogen, the energy source for the H-Tron’s battery. Audi claims that it should help provide even greater range.
According to the manufacturer, the H-Tron will be able to cover 400 miles—about 600 km—with a single fill-up. It does make less power than the E-Tron, however, dropping to 208 hp and 406 lb.-ft. of torque.
The reduced power is chalked up to the H-Tron having just two electric motors, while thre E-Tron gets three.
The H-Tron’s AWD system is borrowed from the new Q7, while a suite of electronic safety and driver aides has also been borrowed from elsewhere in the Audi line-up. Even with all that hydrogen tech, you’ll still get 500 litres of claimed cargo space.
The H-Tron is not the first h-powered car we’ve seen; Toyota has already been selling its Mirai in the U.S., while Hyundai has offered a fleet of hydrogen-powered Tucson FCEV crossovers to British Columbians for the last year.
As for the future of hydro tech, Mercedes has teased the existence of a hydrogen-powered GLC-Class crossover, and Honda has been dabbling with the technology for a few years now.
As far as the H-Tron goes, don’t expect to see it on the road before 2020, suggesting its little more than a concept at this time.