The entire point of the Audi e-tron is to convert traditional Audi customers over to electric vehicles. That’s why it drives so much like a normal car. In fact, aside from the uninterrupted silent acceleration, it feels almost eerily normal to drive. So it’s a car that’s supposed to be easy for regular car customers to become accustomed to. The only real downside of the e-tron is its price. At around $75,000 to start, it’s not exactly accessible to most customers who lease A4s and Q5s. Which is why Audi has come up with a cheaper entry-level model.
At the moment, this entry-level Audi e-tron, dubbed “50 Quattro”, will be a UK-market only car. However, such a thing might make its way to other markets if it does well in the UK and I think it’s actually a very good idea.
Obviously, being an entry-level model, the Audi e-tron 50 Quattro won’t have as much range as the standard car. The standard car uses a 95 kWh battery pack and makes 335 hp and 415 lb-ft of torque with about 240 miles of range on the European WLTP cycle. However, the entry-level e-tron ’50’ will only get a 71 kWh battery pack, which is significantly less dense. So it will only make 308 hp and 398 lb-ft of torque and only get 186 miles of range.
Still, those aren’t bad figures and 186 miles of range is more than what most customers use in two days, never mind one day. Plus, it gets 120 kW charging capabilities, so a fast charge can replenish 80-percent of the battery in just thirty minutes. That’s a bit slower than the full-beans Audi e-tron 55 Quattro but it’s still very fast. Plus, that less dense battery pack will actually be a bit lighter, so it might actually be a bit more fun to drive than the standard car.
Audi UK hasn’t release pricing yet but, as an entry-level model, we do expect it to be significantly less to start than the standard car. If it can be priced in the mid-to-high $50,000 (equivalent) range, that puts it right in the same territory as a well-equipped Audi Q5 and within the wheelhouse of a lot of customers. So it could be very effective in attracting new, traditional customers even more so than the regular e-tron. Which was exactly the goal of the Audi e-tron all along.