It's starting to look more and more likely that the Wankel rotary engine could have a future as an electric vehicle range extender. Felix Wankel's original concept was once seen as having great potential because of its high power density compared to piston engines. Unfortunately, the manufacturing processes available in the 1960s and 1970s made it difficult to achieve adequate durability without high oil consumption and excessive emissions.
Wankel Range Extender
At last week's Vienna Motor Symposium, FEV was on hand showing off its LiiOn-drive Fiat 500 for ride and drives. We first saw this range extended electric vehicle last year at the Society of Automotive Engineers World Congress in Detroit.
Audi A1 e-tron concept – Click above for high-res image gallery
Audi A1 e-tron concept - Click above for high-res image gallery
2011 Audi A1 – Click above for high-res image gallery