A long-range all-electric SUV under the guise of the Audi badge will lead the way in Audi's new electric vehicle offensive.
Audi's first all-electric vehicle will come in the style of an SUV, named the e-tron it will go on sale next year and will come with an extensive range of over 311 miles.
“The first real premium manufacturer doing a premium electric SUV" claims one of Audi's executives, although they seem to forget that Jaguar have the i-Pace SUV on the way next year. The e-tron project is well on track according to Dietmar Voggenreiter, Audi sales and marketing boss. At the Detroit Motor Show he stated that the e-tron is an SUV and is sized to sit between the Q5 and Q7 in the Audi range.
Another spot of good news from Audi is that the e-tron will be built on a development of the electrified platform Porsche are using for its Mission E electric saloon. When you take into consideration how many other manufacturers have electric cars on sale already, you may think that Audi have been a bit late to the party... Well you're wrong, Dietmar Voggenreiter has said that Audi has chosen to launch the e-tron next year because that's when battery technology will be advanced enough to offer a range of over 311 miles.
Not only will battery's be more advanced, but charging infrastructure will be more stable next year, ensuring it will be worth while for drivers looking to own the e-tron. Voggenreiter has stated that - “A 400km to 500km range must be possible and we must have a fastcharging infrastructure,” Meaning that the range will be longer on the e-tron and other prospecting Audi electric vehicles and that fastcharging stations will be widely available for Audi customers.
Audi has been involved with rival firms such as Ford, BMW and Daimler to ensure that a fast-charging network is in place to support long-range EV use. But now Audi has decided to go it alone and launch its own electric vehicles rather than helping sub-brands like BMW with its i models. The e-tron name will be used on a whole range of new vehicles in the Audi range, from fully electric vehicles to plug-in hybrids' for example - A1 e-tron, A3 e-tron and so on...
When Audi start to produce more electric vehicle, the 'e-tron' name will stand for pure electric drive-line in Audi's new electric vehicle structure. "The e-tron name will be used on a range of follow-up electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles, where it will appear mostly as a suffix, as with the A3 e-tron. It’s likely Audi’s next-generation models, which will start with the A8 this summer, will each get electric versions. The A8 e-tron is most likely to be the first candidate." said Voggenreiter.
Audi will be focusing on an SUV body, Voggenreiter says this is because it is the most 'on-trend bodystyle'. Although he has hinted towards e-tron models gearing up for a slightly different styling to Audi vehicles currently in the market.