Audi e-tron all-electric SUV is ready for your deposit this September

Audi is cooking up its own competitor to battle the Tesla Model X and Jaguar I-Pace. It’s called the e-tron and it’s an all-electric SUV that will land in showrooms sometime in the early part of 2019. Before that happens, Audi is looking for interested parties to raise their hands (and open their wallets).
Starting on September 17th of 2018, Audi is opening up the reservation process for the e-tron. Customers will need to put down a refundable $1,000 reservation fee. From there, Audi plans to make the entire process, from production to delivery, a transparent one. You can track everything online.
Audi is launching its updated EV strategy on the back of the e-tron. Two more vehicles will follow with debuts by 2020. What’s more, Audi is looking to see 30% of its customers jump into electric vehicles by 2025.
With the e-tron, that means electric quattro all-wheel-drive, 150 kW high-speed charging, a pair of electric motors, and a 95 kWh battery pack. We expect it to drive well for what it is, considering the weight is mostly tucked nice and low in the chassis. Inside, it should be typical Audi luxury but with a tech-focused feel.
We don’t know all of the details yet, including the MSRP. But the space primarily occupied by Tesla is getting ever more crowded. The EV wars are heating up and they should be interesting to watch unfold.

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17 responses to “Audi e-tron all-electric SUV is ready for your deposit this September”

  1. P161911 Avatar

    Call me when they do a plug in hybrid. Pure EV is just not ready for prime time as the main vehicle for a large majority of Americans. The infrastructure is nearly non-existent outside of large metropolitan areas.

    1. nanoop Avatar

      I have to discourage you from that concept: The last time I test-drove a plug-in hybrid in conditions as pictured above I planted it in 2.5ft deep snow, they had to tow it. I did sweat a little, since those Cayennes are about five years of my net salary here.

    2. outback_ute Avatar

      I’d slightly disagree with a caveat – it would be fine as the main vehicle if you have a fairly predictable daily pattern that falls within the range, so long as you have a second vehicle for long trips or are willing to hire one. Obviously this won’t work for everyone, but that’s more than ok at this point in time.

    3. smalleyxb122 Avatar

      Fine for a main vehicle, but less than ideal for an only vehicle. It can still be done. You just have to rent a vehicle for longer trips, or plan them out with long rests for recharging.
      Renting a car for long trips has some additional advantages, anyway. Rentals are generally by day and not mileage, so a long trip can be quite cost effective. Plus, if you have a breakdown, you can just swap for another car. My folks do this. They have a car that can make it wherever they want to go, but that additional peace of mind is nice. Back when I daily drove a 12mpg full size truck, the fuel saving by renting a compact car could pay for the rental.

      1. Sjalabais Avatar

        Imho Nissan pushed its Leaf this way, too: Buying a Leaf qualified for a free three day rental a couple of times a year for 3-5 years or so. Can’t remember the specifics, but I saw a newspaper ad and remember it as a brilliant marketing move.

        1. P161911 Avatar

          They dropped that program after the first year or so here in the US.

          1. Sjalabais Avatar

            Interesting. Too little use or too much of it?

          2. P161911 Avatar

            Not sure, just know that by 2015 it was gone. I think at one time it was using dealer loaner cars, so maybe just the logistics and insurance side of things. Could have easily been cost too, I know they were trying real hard to get the leases as cheap as possible. In 2014-2015 they were down to as low as $249/month for a 24 month lease here, which made the total cost for a 2 year lease less than $1,000 after the $5,000 state tax rebate.

          3. Sjalabais Avatar

            Wow, that’s almost a free car then. Understandable that gimmicks have to go in such a cutthroat environment.

          4. P161911 Avatar

            That’s why I had a Leaf. I got mine about 3 weeks before the tax rebate ended. The dealer had over 100 or 300 (can’t remember now) Leafs in stock. They were all gone before the rebate ended. For everyone it went from “Maybe I should check out getting a Leaf.” to “Oh crap, I better grab the free government money before it is gone!”. The timing was great for me, my wife’s Trailblazer had died on her at a stop light on a busy highway. The Trailblazer had about 150k miles on it, at that point my wife didn’t trust it anymore. Got her a Leaf and she was happy. I drove the Trailblazer another 10k miles with no problems.

    4. Eric Rucker Avatar

      A few points on that.
      * Most peoples’ daily range easily fits in a big battery EV’s range, and the further out you live, the more likely you have somewhere where you could charge it.
      * For Tesla, the infrastructure does exist – you can, today, roadtrip almost anywhere in the US with a Model S 100D or Model 3 LR with not too much pain. However, Tesla used their own standard for charging (because none of the existing standards were suitable), and none of the automakers have taken them up on their offer to allow other cars to charge on their infrastructure.
      *VAG is forced to implement brand-neutral infrastructure as part of their Dieselgate settlement. We’ll see how good it is (is it accessible at night? how much does it cost to use? what kinds of places will it be (right now it looks like Porsche dealers and Walmart parking lots)? will it be maintained?)

      1. P161911 Avatar

        As a former Leaf lessee and current Chevy Volt driver, a few counterpoints.
        – EV range works for most drives on most days. If you have a long drive, you probably have a place to charge at home, but work chargers are still few and far between. When I worked in downtown Atlanta, there were chargers in the parking deck, but they were cost prohibitive (much cheaper to just run the Volt on 93 octane at 35mpg). Currently I have a cross suburb commute and park my Volt by the dock doors in the rear of the building and charge on 110V. I don’t recall seeing a EV charger on any of my lunch outings, there might be a few around, but they are not convenient. I still average 100mpg, so I’m happy.
        -That EV infrastructure, even for Tesla, might work for an ideal situation. In the real world, chargers are few and far between or at best highly inconvenient (at the local power company office, several blocks from anything else, at a car dealership with limited hours, etc.) , especially in rural areas off the interstate. Also, that road trip ability assumes optimum battery range. I know in my Leaf and the Volt too, if you have to use the heater, you will see about a 20-30% reduction in EV range.
        -Chargers in Wal-Mart parking lots might work, but I see them filling up with cheap high mileage Leafs and being constantly broken.

        1. Eric Rucker Avatar

          There’s a reason why I mentioned Tesla specifically – the Supercharger network is a completely different story from everything else for long-range charging. Yes, using the heat hurts range, but even then, the Superchargers are spaced closely enough that all but the smallest battery Teslas can get to them easily enough. And, the navigation on those cars can include Superchargers automatically, as I understand (and highlights where they are), and they’re typically in retail areas where there’s places to eat or at least grab a coffee while you wait, if you have to wait.
          Anything else, yeah, no, I don’t see it road tripping well unless it has an engine like your Volt.

  2. Rover 1 Avatar
    Rover 1

    Interesting that they’ve let little Jaguar steal a march on them and by such a distance too. Jaguar I-Paces are available at your dealer sans camouflage and with the engineering already sorted and with vastly better build quality than the Tesla Model X with those stupid rear doors, which preclude fitment of roof racks, and from what I’ve seen preclude a level of fit and finish beyond that of a Yugo. I wonder how VW Group got so far behind?

    1. Sjalabais Avatar

      VW bet a lot on fuel saving tech instead of electricity, and it seems like the whole diesel scandal was a solid distraction. In addition, the German debate climate is about an electricity crisis: They have vowed to move away from nuclear, built up a huge green energy field with daytime/weather based supply issues, and they are very afraid of being too dependent on Russian gas and oil (Mr. Trump knew which card to play here). Betting on one tech that sucks huge amounts of electricity out of the network, often at night, is contrary to that world view. See how few Teslas have been sold in Germany, a country that usually is pretty nerdy and welcoming on tech (unless the tech has a surveillance side to it; but that’s another discourse).

      1. Rover 1 Avatar
        Rover 1

        That does make sense. The German mindset. If we’re going to have to burn fuel, burn it very carefully right where you use it.

  3. neight428 Avatar

    That’s the current electric vehicle market in a nutshell. Few specifics, but plop down a grand and we’ll put you on the list to pay lots more. I’ve nothing against the machines at all, but the space is still a luxury vanity project underwritten by politics. Ick.