It’s time to replace those V8 fender badges.
You can love Tesla or hate it, but it's hard to deny the effect the company has had on electric vehicles. The California-based company has shown there is a market for EVs as other automakers announcing their own electrification plans over the last few years. The prevalence of electric vehicles has also spurred movement in the aftermarket and tuning scene, too, with tuning shops, do-it-yourselfers, and others converting gasoline-powered vehicles into electric ones. One such person is a gentleman named Sam who, according to him, has the world's first Tesla-powered Audi S5.
Sam started the project with the intent to build something no one else has done. He was able to find a high-mile Audi S5 with a pristine body and a salvaged 2014 Tesla Model S P85D. When he started, he had no idea how he was going to fit the Tesla's larger battery pack into the smaller vehicle, nor did he know how he was going to keep Audi's Quattro all-wheel-drive – something other EV conversions often discard. One Audi drivetrain part the new electric-powered S5 kept was the transmission housing that now houses the custom gear reduction.
Sam and the team he picked to help him design and build the electric S5 had a ton of hurdles to overcome for the project to work. They had to work to get the motor control unit to speak with both the powertrain and the vehicle itself, which features a fully-functional 10-inch touchscreen on the dashboard that displays vehicle and powertrain information. Horsepower and torque are dependent on the battery's charge with the official numbers being 416 (310 kilowatts) and 450 pound-feet (610 Newton-meters), respectively.
The electrified Audi S5 is a marvelous piece of aftermarket work. In the year that Sam has owned it, all he's had to do is rotate the tires. No oil changes, timing belts, or other worries we often associate with gas-powered vehicles. Battery longevity is still unclear, but for now, it appears Sam is enjoying the coupe and all that torque.