Audi has teamed up with Chinese company Hanergy to develop solar roofs for cars.
Alta Devices, a subsidiary of the Chinese firm, will design the glass sunroof with integrated solar cells, with the aim of boosting the range of Audi’s electric vehicles.
Eventually, the firms hope to cover almost the entire roof surface with solar cells, helping power the air conditioning system and seat heaters.
They could also be used to power the traction battery, which Audi believes would be a “milestone along the way to achieving sustainable, emission-free mobility”.
Dr Bernd Martens, Audi Board of Management Member for Procurement said: “The range of electric cars play a decisive role for our customers. Together with Hanergy, we plan to install innovative solar technology in our electric cars that will extend their range and is also sustainable.”
The companies plan to present a vehicle prototype by the end of the year.