Can Audi Steal Customers Away From Tesla With The E-Tron Luxury SUV?
Written By: Brian Jones
Audi is known for making quality vehicles of top European design. The Audi A4, A6, and A7 sedans have some of the highest customer satisfaction ratings.
In 2019, Audi customers started taking deliveries of the company’s new e-Tron luxury crossover SUV built to compete directly with Tesla. The e-Tron is a 4-door, 5-seat crossover. It is a fully electric vehicle with new upgrades that extended range up to 204 miles on a full charge which is a great start.
The e-Tron has great size for a crossover, with max cargo space of 57 cubic feet, which is just shy of the 65 cubic feet offered by the incoming SUV by Tesla, which will start hitting driveways in the coming quarter 1 of 2020. It has more storage than the Jaguar I-PACE about 31 cubic feet less than the Tesla Model X which is the largest SUV that Tesla offers at this time.
As an Audi luxury vehicle, the e-Tron has significantly more technology and features than other electric vehicles such as the Chevy Bolt, Nissan Leaf, Kia Soul EV and Kia Niro. Included is a 10.1” infotainment system, Amazon Alexa integration, Android and Apple CarPlay, and Virtual Cockpit Plus. Rather than having analogue speedometer display, the screen is customizable for each driver, so the user experience is different from one car to another. Rather than having to look over to your center stack, you can have your music playlists, navigation, and more right in front of you. Such luxury is expected from a $75k Audi vehicle. This vehicle has air suspension with five driving modes, including off-road mode. The off-road capability gives this vehicle a major advantage over most other EV’s.
How does the e-Tron’s range compare? The electric range of 204 miles is significantly more than plug-in hybrids and similar to many other full electric vehicles such as the newer Nissan Leaf range of 150 to 226 miles, Chevy Bolt’s 238 mile range, Kia Niro’s 239 mile range, and Jaguar I-PACE range of 234 miles. However, it can’t compete with the Tesla Model X’s range of up to 328 miles.
The Electric Sport Utility Vehicle is capable of 150 kw fast charging which can add 54 miles of range with a short 10 minute charge. The SUV has 402 hp which allows towing up to 4,000 lbs. and 0-60 time of 5.5 seconds. As a comparison, the Tesla Model X is capable of 0-60 in 2.7 seconds (but the top Performance trim starts at $104k). 1,000 kWh of charging with Electrify America are included in the first 4 years of ownership.
The Audi e-Tron is a luxury crossover that competes head to head with the Tesla Model X and Jaguar I-Pace, but which one is better? We will soon get our hands on one and let you know what ew find out! The e-Tron starts at $74,800, the Tesla Model X starts at $81,000, and the Jaguar I-PACE starts at $69,850. One advantage that the Tesla vehicles have is the autopilot features. and Audi does not, but will Audi’s heritage give them enough of a head start in the electric SUV race to steal some market share before the smaller Tesla Model Y hits the market? If you are looking for a luxury crossover EV, consider if an e-Tron is right for you.