If you’ve been waiting for the day when there were multiple luxury electric SUV’s to choose from before you purchased yours, that day has come. The Audi e-tron is now available for pre-order; $1,000 down will put you in line to buy a spacious, state of the art, premium electric SUV that will comfortably hold five people and their cargo.
— Judie Stanford ? (@geardiary) September 18, 2018
Last night, Audi had a huge dealer and press event in San Francisco to introduce their first all-electric production vehicle, the mid-size e-tron SUV, which starts at $74,800. The 2019 Audi e-tron SUV will sell in three variants: Premium Plus, Prestige, and the First Edition.
The e-tron is made to be a highly aerodynamic and efficient AWD electric vehicle with two asynchronous electric motors and a 4,000-pound towing capacity. The e-tron will be able to do 0-60 in 5.5 seconds with a top speed of 124.
The Audi e-tron uses an innovative recuperation system encompassing both electric motors, to boost efficiency. On average, our engineers estimate that this system is responsible for as much as 30 percent of the e-tron’s range depending on the conditions, terrain and driving style. The electric SUV can recover energy in two ways: by means of coasting recuperation when the driver releases the accelerator, or by means of braking recuperation by depressing the brake pedal. When pressing the brake pedal, the electronic control unit computes within milliseconds how much pressure the system needs to build up for the specific braking process required. A high-performance electric motor supplies the necessary energy. The integrated brake control system is approximately 30 percent lighter than a conventional system thanks to its more compact design. The conventional vacuum pump is no longer needed in this configuration.
At 193″ long, 76.3″ wide, and 65.5″ tall, the e-tron is beefy and yet not too large; the total luggage capacity is 28.5 cubic feet. with the rear seats up and 57.0 cubic feet with the rear seats down.
One of the coolest new tech features in the vehicle, I think, is the integration of the virtual outside mirrors. Rather than the glass mirrors we are all used to seeing on either side of the car, the Audi e-tron SUV has an HD camera on each side collecting information that is delivered to touchscreen OLED monitors on each door. Honestly, I haven’t yet driven the vehicle, so I can’t say if this is distracting or not, but it was a definite WOW feature.
The e-tron has a large battery system consisting of 36 cell modules in aluminum housings arranged on two levels. The battery system “operates with a nominal voltage of 396 volts and stores 95 kWh of energy.” A compact charging station comes with each Audi e-tron, enabling the vehicle to completely charge overnight (9 hours at 9.6kw/hr). When you buy an Audi e-tron, Amazon will come out and install its home charging station for you.
The three Audi e-tron packages available will be structured like this:
Premium Plus – $74,800
• 20-inch wheels w/ all-season tires
• Top view camera system
• Comfort pre-conditioning
• Audi side assist w/ cross-traffic alert
• Full LED exterior + interior lighting
• Matrix design headlamps
• MMI Navigation plus w/ virtual cockpit
• 3D 705W B&O Sound w/16 speakers
• Audi phonebox + smartphone interface
• 12-way power front seats, heated + cooled
• HOD, 4-spoke power adj. steering wheel
• Full leatherette interior package
• Illuminated aluminum door sills
• Panoramic sunroof
Prestige – $81,800
Includes all of the Premium Plus equipment and the following:
• Head-up display
• Driver Assistance package
• Individual Contour seats w/ massage
• Power-door closers
• Rear window sunshades
• Dual-pane acoustic front side windows
• Valcona Leather + extended leather
• Memory for front passenger seat
• Air quality package + ionizer
First Edition (limited edition of 999) – $86,700
Includes all of the Prestige equipment and the following:
• 21-inch bi-color Black wheels, A/S tires
• Daytona Gray pearl effect paint
• Alu-Optic exterior trim (sills, air inlet, diffuser)
• Dynamic orange painted brake calipers
• Black Valcona leather interior w/gray contrast stitching
• Volcano Gray Ash Natural Wood inlays
• LED puddle lamp “edition one” projection
• Night Vision Assistant
No smart car is complete anymore without its own app, and the e-tron is no exception.
With the myAudi app, it can be accessed from the convenience of the home. It can be used to plan, control, and monitor the charging and pre-heating/-cooling of the electric SUV. The customer can set a departure time, for example, so that the Audi e-tron is charged and/or heated/cooled at the desired time. Customers can even choose to heat or cool certain zones in the car. On cold winter days, for example, customers can turn on the optional seat heating or the heated steering wheel. The app also displays charging and driving data.
You’ll also use the myAudi app to control charging priorities so that you can take advantage of recharging during less expensive times of the day.
One thing we aren’t yet sure about is the range rating for the e-tron SUV. That information will be coming soon, but if you are someone like me — who suffers from range anxiety with anything battery-powered, you’ll be happy to hear about two things. The first is that the Audi e-tron SUV will debut a “DC fast charging capability of up to 150 kW available at select high-speed public charging stations, this capability can deliver up-to an 80 percent charge in only approximately 30 minutes.” The second is that the e-tron will be supported by a nationwide charging network, “Powered by Electrify America.”
By July 2019, this network will include nearly 500 fast-charging sites complete or under development throughout 40 states and 17 metro areas. Offering advanced charging, Electrify America’s chargers are capable of delivering up to 350kW. With the purchase of the Audi e-tron customers will receive 1,000 kWh of charging at Electrify America sites over four years of ownership.
Want to learn more and put in a reservation for your own Audi e-tron? Audi has a dedicated reservation site set up.
Bonus! Here are two Audi e-tron prototypes for your enjoyment.