The 2019 Audi E-Tron is Audi’s first full electric-offering, as crossover SUV the automaker hopes will give Tesla a run for its money. It joins BMW, Polestar, and Jaguar, and several others on the growing list of Tesla’s competitors.
The E-Tron rides on a 115-inch wheelbase and measures 193 inches long, meaning it’s a little shorter than the Audi Q5 but has a longer wheelbase. With the fully-charged 95-kWh battery, its EPA-estimated driving range is 204 miles. The fast-charging Electrify America network supports the E-Tron. The car’s adaptive suspension, tech-rich cabin, and advanced driver aids have all made a good impression on consumers, but is it really that good?
Consumer Reports recently tested the midsize luxury EV, and here are the four things it found most impressive about the 2019 Audi E-Tron.
Audi’s E-Tron has kept the German automaker’s signature grille – the traditional four-ring logo. This feature makes it stand out from many electric vehicles which have a smooth, uncluttered nose. The SUV also has thick rear roof pillars. Its upright but sporty shape emphasizes its family relationship with Audi’s Q7 and Q5 SUVs.
Its rear has a distinctive horizontal strip of LED lights. Audi has also introduced ultra-slim side mirrors to enhance the SUV’s aerodynamics. The side mirrors-cum-cameras give the driver a view of the car’s surroundings. Each door panel has a screen where drives can view images from the low-profile mirrors.
The E-Tron features all-wheel drive with an electric motor on each axle. When drivers need more traction or full power, the front motor can add an additional 184 hp. At moderate speeds, it only uses the 224-hp rear motor.
With a 204-mile range, Audi claims that the SUV only needs 5.5 seconds to hit 60 mph. It also has a 95-kWh lithium-ion battery pack. On a 240-volt charging system, you can recharge the E-Tron in 9 hours. But fast chargers are available that will cut that time significantly.
Audi’s first electric offering also has a standard adaptive air suspension. Drivers can take on off-road trails with 3-inch-taller ride heights. Lower ride heights will be suitable for better fuel economy and sportier driving.
For a long time now, Tesla has run the show in the EV market. Audi’s E-Tron hopes to stir the market and shake up Tesla’s control. The automaker intends to maintain its real luxury promise while at it. Audi lovers should enjoy the ride.
The Tech-Rich Cabin
Drivers can scan important information on the head-up display as they drive. The Audi E-Tron also comes with a standard Virtual Cockpit—a customizable, high-resolution instrument panel. The navigation map is found on the infotainment view, while drivers can access the power meter and speedometer from the traditional view.
At the center of the car, you’ll find two large touch-screen displays that make up the MMI Touch Response. The two screens, which can be daunting for beginners, are manageable with time. Audi introduced them to replace the typical switches and knobs.
Drivers can alter the seat and climate controls on the lower display and control navigation and infotainment functions on the larger, upper screen.
Advanced Safety & Driver-Assist Systems
The rear cross-traffic warning and forward collision warning top the list of the upgrades in the SUV’s safety systems. The E-Tron also has standard blind-spot and lane-departure cautions as well as an automatic braking system. The new adaptive cruise system enables drivers to keep their lanes more efficiently.
When occupants open their doors, an exit-warning system alerts them on any vehicle approaching from behind. The SUV’s Park Steering Assist system ensures that drivers have better control of both perpendicular and parallel parking situations. They can focus on the brake and throttle while the system handles the steering wheel.
All images provided by the manufacturer unless otherwise noted.