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Review of the Audi e-tron

Review of the Audi e-tron

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Take a look at the electric vehicle market and you’d think that EV buyers all want quirky looking cars that shout about their eco credentials

Why the Audi e-tron is considered one of the best SUVs in the premium EV market.


What is it?

Take a look at the electric vehicle market and you’d think that EV buyers all want quirky looking cars that shout about their eco credentials. However, as they become more popular, more and more drivers want their EV to have more traditional styling.

That’s where the e-tron comes in. This is a premium electric SUV that goes about its job without making a fuss, instead bringing the values of class and quality that have made Audi so popular over the years.


What’s new?

The e-tron has been around for a few years, and late in 2021 Audi introduced a few updates to keep it fresh in the face of growing competition. Changes were far from extensive but helped to bring a little extra range, something that was also given to owners of older cars through software updates.

There are two ‘regular’ e-trons, badged 50 and 55, with the higher number relating to more performance. Those who want the fastest example should go for the e-tron S, though. Inside you’ll find a high-tech interior with Audi’s excellent twin-screen infotainment system while fast charging is always a bonus for EV owners.


What’s under the bonnet?

The Audi e-tron range starts with the 50 model, which makes 309bhp and 540Nm of torque, with a top speed of 118mph. However, if range is important you’ll want to step up to the 55. Although it’s more powerful at 350bhp and 664Nm of torque, it can go over 250 miles per charge.

Opt for the performance-focused S model and you’ll have nearly 500bhp on top with a healthy 973Nm of torque. Range is slightly lower, though, at 222 miles.


What’s it like to drive?

The key feature of the Audi e-tron driving experience is refinement. The German firm has built its reputation on building premium cars and when you couple that quality with the silence of an electric powertrain you have an excellent combination.

The 50 isn’t particularly quick, but jump into the 55 and there’s a real punch of acceleration on offer. The S is another level altogether, though all but the biggest of speed freaks would likely be happy with what the 55 can offer.


How does it look?

Audi’s regular SUVs have very imposing styling designed to make them really stand out on the road, but with the e-tron it has gone a completely different route. Sure, its size gives it a strong road presence, but its styling is fairly restrained.

It’s clearly designed to be timeless, taking a modern, futuristic edge but without jumping down any obvious design styles that could date it. The LED light designs front and rear are lovely details in particular.


What’s it like inside?

We might have become used to Audi’s twin-screen infotainment system but that doesn’t make it any less impressive. It still feels fresh and up to date, and has integrated a multi-screen design in a seamless way, with high resolution screens that are very responsive.

As well as the digital aspect, there’s still that classic premium feel that Audi is so good at. There are high quality materials throughout, and it’s impressively practical.


What’s the spec like?

There are five trim levels on offer. Prices start at £62,070 for the 50 Technik and £72,220 for the 55 Technik and include 20-inch alloy wheels, LED headlights and Audi’s excellent Virtual Cockpit. As the specifications increase, you’ll find alloy wheels up to 22 inches, styling kits and improved interior upholstery.

The e-tron S is offered with a choice of two trim levels, with the all singing, all dancing Vorsprung tipping that scales at more than £103,000, though it does bring great equipment such as digital Matrix LED headlights and a bang & Olufsen sound system.


Verdict

The Audi e-tron has established itself as one of the most desirable SUVs out there, regardless of its electric powertrain. The fact you also get near-silent operation only improves things.

There’s a wide range of models available, with the more expensive versions getting a fantastic range of equipment. However, even those lower down the range represent fantastic value for money.

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