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Electric

Audi: synthetic fuels are not the future

Audi’s technical development chief tells TG that it's all-in on EVs for the future

Published: 21 Mar 2022

Audi has said that synthetic fuel won’t be the future for the brand, and that it will eventually go EV-only when the internal combustion engine is consigned to history.

“Synthetic fuels are just a bridging technology for us,” Audi’s technical development chief Oliver Hoffmann recently told TopGear.com. 

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“For other industries – boats and aeroplanes etc – this can be a solution for the future. Our future, and to be honest the future of personal mobility, will be battery electric vehicles.”

To be fair, that’s something we’ve expected for a long time, and Audi had already said that it’d stop producing new internal combustion engines by the end of 2026. The work done by Porsche on synthetic fuels had given hope that the noise and drama might at least live on a little longer, though. 

Hoffmann stated that the problem with synthetic fuel wasn’t the tech itself, but that there was a need to produce it in as green a way as possible. He also said the same about hydrogen power. 

“Hydrogen technology is not rocket science. We are able to develop this technology, but the problem is getting green hydrogen.

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“The most efficient way for us to reduce CO2 emissions is battery electric mobility.”

That’s not to say that Audi is completely cold on synthetic fuels, though. Just last week it made some positive noises about potentially joining F1, with the sport set to switch to new power units in 2026 that’ll feature more electrical assistance and will run on a sustainable fuel made from bio waste.

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