Audi Unveils All-Electric e-tron SUV to Compete with Tesla Model X
Audi has announced it’s running into the all-electric SUV market with the release of the midsize SUV called e-tron.
Audi's first all-electric production vehicle is set to send tremors through the other players in the game like Tesla, Mercedes, and Porsche.
The e-tron has two electric motors but their exact output is still unknown but Audi boasts the SUV will jump from zero to 60 miles per hour in 5.5 seconds, and have a top speed of 124 mph. A 95-kilowatt battery does the power storage but just how far the vehicle can go on a single charge was left out of Audi’s initial press release.
More details will be announced when car makes public debut
If it is truly to be a competitor in the midsize all-electric SUV market, we can expect the e-tron will hit somewhere between 240 to 295 miles on a charge. More details will be released from Audi when the car makes it first public appearance in San Francisco this week.
Other details punters are keen to find out are the car's charging times. Audi is vague, saying the e-tron "debuts a DC fast charging capability of up to 150 kW available at select high-speed public charging stations," and that "this capability can deliver up to an 80-percent charge in only approximately 30 minutes."
The sporty looking SUV's 9.6-kW AC Level 2 charger, is reportedly able to "deliver a fresh charge overnight" while a big plus for the car is its regenerative braking technology.
Audi estimates 90 percent of braking energy will be recuperated, keeping the car on the road longer.
e-tron balances green credentials with luxury
Other cool features that Audi has made available include the onboard MMI infotainment system which guides drivers on a route to include charging stations if needed, taking into account the car's current status and traffic conditions. The e-tron will also include Audi's Virtual Cockpit, this high-resolution display makes navigating easy and removes the need for almost all switches in the car.
Most of the car's functions can be operated by the crisp touchscreen. The e-tron comes with some autonomous features but not the full works. The inbuilt tech maintains the car's position in the middle of the lane and at a set distance between other cars but it requires a hand on the steering wheel at all time.
The e-tron is a dominant looking car, its big and has been styled to satisfy both luxury car owners and sporty eco-types.
The platinum gray grille cuts a tough look and the rear is memorable with a horizontal light strip running the full length of the car.
The inside of the e-tron is luxuriously appointed with a panoramic sunroof and four-zone air conditioning.
If you need to cart a lot of kids or gear around, the e-tron is a good choice with 28.5 cubic feet of space behind the front seats. The back seats also fold down to expand that space to 57 cubes.
US customers can place orders for standard and platinum packages
At a starting price of $74,800, not including $995 for the destination and delivery, the e-tron is a big investment. The entry-level Premium Plus option comes with 20-inch wheels, a 360-degree camera, 16-speaker Bang & Olufsen sound system, heated and cooled 12-way adjustable front seats and a full leatherette interior package.
Or you can choose to go to the next level and invest in the Prestige pack. For $81,800 you’ll get a head-up display, driver assistance package, massaging front seats, a Valcona leather interior and dual-pane acoustic front and side windows.
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