Audi has chosen San Francisco for the official unveiling of its first all-electric vehicle … if we exclude the failure of the rare electric R8 marketed a few years ago!
Introducing the new 2019 e-tron, an SUV that speaks directly to Tesla Model X buyers – even if there is a difference in price and interior volume – and the Mercedes-Benz EQC, which also debuted early September.
Production of the Audi e-tron 2019 will be provided by the manufacturer’s new car cover plant in Brussels, Belgium, and on the US side, the first deliveries are expected in the spring of 2019.
The design of this first EV is not really a surprise since the manufacturer has more than once shown his future electric utility dressed with a black sticker, white and orange. The silhouette of this mid-size SUV respects what was previously shown.
Although this is a first for Audi, the e-tron looks like other vehicles in the Audi family, starting with this shield dominated by the grille grille and LED lights. In profile, the e-tron is somewhat different from its peers by this small hatch behind the first axle, it concealing the plug where the charging cable takes place when the vehicle is replenished energy.
Finally, the rear portion is mainly characterized by the illuminated band that crosses the vehicle on both sides, but also by the absence of exhaust pipes. The 20-inch wheels are wrapped by low-resistance tires.
Inside, the Audi atmosphere is renewed. The dashboard is, like the other products of the brand, that is to say functional as possible. The ventilation controls are grouped in a touch screen, just under the one that serves as a central screen for entertainment on board. Since it is a question of screens, the instrumentation gauges behind the steering wheel are also replaced by a large digital screen, while in the door panels, two other small screens broadcast an image taken by the camera housed on each side of the screen. vehicle.
Audi may be the first to unveil an SUV equipped with cameras instead of traditional mirrors – Lexus introduced an ES with cameras earlier this month for the Japanese market – but for now, this technology is is not allowed in North America. Unless there is a turnaround between now and the beginning of the production of the vehicle, the copies that will be driven by us will be equipped with conventional mirrors.
Of course, what matters most when it comes to an electric vehicle is what propels it and the autonomy announced between refills. Unfortunately, the manufacturer has remained silent about the power of the two electric motors – one per axle – and the autonomy between refills. In the light of other players in this luxury segment, it is possible to expect a range of 400 km.
In addition, we know that this SUV will be very effective at acceleration since the 0-96 km / h announced by Audi is achieved in 5.5 seconds, while the top speed is limited to 200 km / h. Like any good electric vehicle, the e-tron also uses a system of energy recovery, the latter operating when the vehicle is decelerating – so as soon as the right pedal is released – but also when braking or as soon as the brake pedal is released as well. Audi estimates that this recovery system is responsible for up to 30% of the vehicle’s range, all of which is related to road conditions, of course.
The Canadian division had not yet announced a price for the e-tron, but we know that the US model starts at US $ 74,800.
Audi e-tron: the unveiling will take place on 17 September
It’s not just the Mercedes-Benz EQ C that catches the eye this month. Audi also wants its share of the cake and, with this first photo that shows the left corner of the shield of the SUV, the manufacturer with four rings prepares its entry into the world exclusively electric car.
The SUV e-tron will be officially presented in San Francisco on September 17, but already, we learn that the production of the vehicle is started at the factory in Brussels, Belgium. It is also here that will be assembled the more stylized penchant of the utility, it is a Sportback variant of the same SUV.
It’s been a long time since the manufacturer tells us about its first electric vehicle – if we exclude the rare R8 e-tron a few years ago – which is why there will not be much surprise on 17 next September. The prototype dressed in its black, white and orange coat has already presented the silhouette of the utility, while the official photos of the cabin also showed what to expect from the electric vehicle.
Audi has even unveiled that the e-tron would be equipped with two electric motors totaling a combined power of 355 horsepower and a completely electric torque (!) Of 414 lb-ft. And, to please performance lovers, the Audi e-tron will also offer an additional power injection for eight seconds, with power up to 402 horsepower and torque at 490 lb-ft.
With its 95 kWh battery pack, the Audi e-tron would be able to travel 400 km between refills, according to the World Harmonized Light Vehicle Test Procedure (WLTP). We’ll see when he arrives on our roads, but already, this autonomy is very interesting.
The manufacturer also promised that its SUV would be the first vehicle in the world not to generate CO 2 emissions during production, thanks in particular to renewable energy to power the production plant.
However, there is one last step and it will take place on September 17, when the sheet covering this vehicle will be completely removed. See you in two weeks!