In a market created and dominated by Tesla, other manufacturers are wanting to add their names to the mix, creating a pool of choice bigger than ever before in the high-end electric vehicle market. Entering the battle of the electric SUVs, we present to you Audi’s first purely electric car, the Audi e-tron. Up against the Tesla Model X, Jaguar I-Pace and the impending Mercedes EQC. Yes, strong competition indeed.
Ready to go on sale at the end of the year, Audi will start building the car at its Brussels’ plant where the A1 was built. Early indications suggest the e-tron will start from around £70k. Register as soon as the car goes on sale and you can expect delivery towards the end of 2019.
The e-tron’s pair of electric motors and 95kwh lithium-ion battery pack will power it to reach 62mph in less than six seconds, and on to a top speed of 124mph.
As the e-tron has been designed to do long-distance driving, using the WLTP cycle it is said to deliver a range of around 250 miles. The charging set up is a key show-stopper. The driver’s side houses a 150kW DC port capable of restoring the charge up to 80 per cent in under half an hour.
Like with the A8 and Q8, the e-tron comes with a handful of driver assistance systems: adaptive cruise control, automatic emergency braking and lane assist will feature as standards to keep you safe.
The new EV breathes a familiar design with a touch of 20-inch Tron wheels and new design accents bordering Audi’s iconic octagonal grille. Clearly, the styling takes inspiration from the current range of Audi SUVs, perhaps even too much. The e-tron’s looks are unlikely to stand out at an Audi showroom. The vivid creases above the wheels hold a resemblance to those you’ll find on the compact Q2, while the angular headlights and prominent air intakes in the front bumper mirror the smaller Q5.
Once again drawing inspiration from Audi’s range-topping luxury cars, the e-tron’s interior follows that of the A6, A7 and A8. Inside you’ll find two MMI touchscreens in its centre console and the brand’s usual ‘Virtual Cockpit’ display.
The 2019 Audi e-tron will be followed by a Sportback version in 2019; GT and compact models in 2020; and seven more all-electric Audis by 2025.
Undeniably, the Audi e-tron shows a luxury electric SUV is becoming a normal thing but has Audi delivered its promise of changing the game?