The appendages let Audi test rear-facing cameras legally

Audi plans to unveil the new E-Tron Quattro electric SUV on August 30, but despite the impending premiere date, a fresh batch of spy shots reveals the company evaluating new tech for the upcoming model. This test mule wears a bizarre setup that combines rear-facing cameras and traditional mirrors that attach via spindly stalks.

While this solution to giving drivers a view for lane changing is ugly, there’s a good reason behind it. In many countries around the world, transportation authorities still require conventional side mirrors, and cameras can’t be the only way to get a look at what’s going on behind the vehicle. One exception to this is Japan, which approves of camera-only setups since 2016.

audi e-tron spy 2

Audi unveiled a nearly production-spec E-Tron Quattro at the 2018 Geneva Motor Show and announced plans to test a fleet of 250 of them on public roads leading up to the vehicle’s official debut. The Four Rings hasn’t been too coy about teasing details about the model’s final specifications, though. The E-Tron Quattro will come with a 95-kilowatt-hour lithium-ion battery that will provide 248.5 miles (400 kilometers) of range in the new WLTP test. The electric motors will produce 435 horsepower (320 kilowatts) but will be able to bump the output to 503 hp (379 kW) during a temporary power boost. Prices in Germany will start at 80,000 Euros ($93,500 at current exchange rates). An arrival in the United States possibly won’t happen until 2019.

For buyers looking for a more stylish electric SUV, Audi will also launch the E-Tron Sportback in Europe in 2019. It will share a platform with the E-Tron Quattro but will feature a sleeker appearance with a curving roofline. The Four Rings factory in Brussels, Belgium, will produce both vehicles.

Source: Salento V12 via Facebook