Porsche and Audi are jointly developing a new dedicated EV platform called PPE, short for ‘Premium Platform Electric.’ Project centers in Ingolstadt and Weissach are running on full steam to complete its development on time ahead of the first model launch in 2022.
Announced in early 2018
When Porsche and Audi jointly announced the co-development of the PPE platform in February 2018, they said that the project will spawn three new model families altogether. Audi is leading two of them, both of which will include models from both brands. Porsche is in charge of the third project. As you can see in the infographic below, there’ll be plenty of component-sharing between the PPE platform models.
Follows the MEB & J1
The PPE platform is essentially the successor to the MLB platform, which underpins every Audi model with an internal combustion engine from the A4 through A8 and Q5 through Q8. While the MEB Platform is for small and medium EVs, the PPE platform is mainly for medium and large EVs. PPE is similar to the MEB in some aspects and the J1 platform in a few, and it has some exclusive technical aspects of its own to be the perfect basis for the planned medium-size class and up models.
The PPE platform models will be smaller than the MLB platform models but still offer a more spacious interior. Air suspension, rear-axle steering (all-wheel steering), and torque vectoring will be available in these models. The current MEB platform models don’t possess any of these capabilities but the upcoming VW ID. Buzz, based on a special ‘XL’ version of the MEB platform, is likely to offer rear-axle steering (all-wheel steering). However, that’s just an exception.
Battery & Specifications
The EVs based on PPE platform will come in single-motor RWD and dual-motor AWD configurations. The dual-motor RWD models/configurations will have an additional motor, either a permanent magnet synchronous motor or an asynchronous motor, powering the front wheels. They will offer a combined power of up to 475 kW (646 PS/637 hp).
The MEB platform gives the flexibility of using both pouch and prismatic cells, while the J1 platform allows using only pouch cells. The battery pack modules of the PPE platform-based models will consist of prismatic cells. Both pouch and prismatic cells are more versatile than round cells (which Audi used in the experimental R8 e-tron) and allow a more dense packaging. However, prismatic cells are more robust because they have separate aluminum housings.
The PPE platform EVs will feature large battery packs with an embedded (gross) energy content of up to 100 kWh. Porsche hasn’t talked about the maximum possible range, but Audi is targeting a range of up to more than 700 km (435 miles)*.
The state of charge will be 800 volts, and while the initial plan was to offer a high charging capacity of 350 kW, the new plan is to limit the maximum charging power to 270 kW. That’d be still fast enough, Audi indicated in the A6 e-tron concept announcement, saying that just ten minutes of charging can give a range of 300 km of range with just 10 minutes of charging using a Level 3 DC fast charger. Charging up its 100 kWh (gross) battery pack from 5 to 80% SoC takes less than 25 minutes.
Facets of the PPE Architecture
- Oil system for gears and e-motor with electric oil pump and dry sump lubrication for low friction and improved efficiency
- 800V HV system that offers fast charging capability
- Silicium carbide semiconductors for high efficiency in power electronics
- E-motor with hairpin winding and direct oil cooling for stator and rotor (high power density/reduction of rare earth)
Models that will use the PPE Architecture
PPE provides high level of flexibility, enabling cars in the B- to D-segment across the Volkswagen Group. The first models sitting on the PPE platform will be the Audi Q6 e-tron and the Porsche Macan EV. Audi has said that the Q6 e-tron will enter production in 2022, while Porsche has said that it plans to launch the Macan EV in early 2023. Following this, the Audi Q6 e-tron Sportback and the Audi A6 e-tron would use this base, besides other derivatives. Together, Audi and Porsche plan to sell 7 million PPE platform EVs by 2030.
Featured Image Source: Audi; information in this article is compiled using data and facts presented by Audi to the media and investors