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Audi Q4 e-Tron Details Revealed

Despite having only recently divulged specifications for their latest electric vehicles in the form of the e-tron GT quattro and RS e-tron GT, Audi have pounced on the opportunity to disseminate information concerning the interior and new technological aspects of the newest model to join the proliferating e-tron family and seem poised to reveal it formally within the coming days or weeks: the Q4 e-tron. 

Although specifications for the powertrain of all the available Q4 e-tron variants have not yet been announced, Audi have been particularly keen to promote and emphasise the impressive amount of space that the Q4 e-tron will boast and how it will be analogous and comparable to an SUV far above its class. This is not surprising, considering that the Q4 e-tron will be Audi’s first production vehicle to utilise the Volkswagen Group’s MEB (Modular Electric Drive Matrix) platform, which the Group claims not only maximises the efficiency and potential of the powertrain, but also, due to its arrangement and architecture, significantly increases interior space. Therefore, though the dimensions of the Q4 place it between the Q3 and Q5 in terms of size and proportions, Audi has said that with the structural benefits of the MEB platform, its interior will be reminiscent of larger SUV models such as the Q5 and Q7. 

It is likely that there will be no notable changes to the exterior and the Q4 e-tron will almost identically resemble the concept car bearing its name that was revealed at the 2019 Geneva Motor Show, although, as is customary, there may be minor alterations that cause it to deviate slightly from the concept in order to improve aerodynamics or just for general aesthetic. 

It is in the interior of the Q4 e-tron that the majority of modifications, changes, and additions lie, such as cupholders in the front doors; a steering wheel (whose flat top and bottom provide it with a hexagonal shape) with touch-sensitive, multifunctional buttons delivering haptic feedback and enabling the control and regulation of the vehicle’s various functions; a 10.25 inch digital dashboard display; a 10.1 inch MMI infotainment touchscreen (which can also be made available at 11.6 inches for an increased price, making it the largest central display unit offered by Audi); and, most importantly an augmented reality head-up display. While optional, the AR-HUD system will superimpose graphics and images onto the road using information collected by an array of sensors and cameras. These projections include arrows to indicate a turn, distance markers, indicators to inform you of when the adaptive cruise control system is activated or for when the driver is transitioning from one lane to enough to another, and images showing the orientation of the wheels to aid the lane-assist function. Additionally, the steering wheel is offered with paddles that will allow the driver to adjust the amount of regenerative braking. 

Returning to the matter of space, the Q4 e-tron will possess 520 litres of boot capacity, which can be extended to 1490 litres by folding back the seats that come in a 40:20:20 configuration. For upholstery, there will be options for conventional leather, as well as other textiles, such as Nappa leather, and an artificial Dinimica leather made from recycled plastic bottles. If the latter option is selected, this increases the percentage of textiles in the vehicle made from recycled materials to over 50%. 

Though Audi have yet abstained from unveiling extensive details about the Q4’s specifications, there will most certainly be rear wheel drive and four wheel drive versions. The most powerful variant will use both a rear motor that produces approximately 204 brake horsepower and 310 Nm of torque and a front motor producing 102 brake horsepower and 150 Nm of torque, thus enabling a 0-60 mph time of roughly 6.3 seconds. Furthermore, any 4 wheel drive versions will be capable of 280 miles of range, whereas, the most efficient rear wheel drive version with the best range capacity, will be capable of around 311 miles of range. More information related to less powerful models and other variants will be disclosed in the approaching weeks. 

The Q4 e-tron will have a maximum DC charging rate of 125 kW, but will be compatible with a host of other public chargers. For models with the more powerful 77 kWh battery, charging times from 0 to 80% using a 125 kW rapid charger will be situated around the 30 minute mark, whilst 7 kW AC chargers and wall boxes will accomplish a full charge overnight. 

In terms of price, it is unlikely that any of the Q4 e-tron variants will qualify for the reduced £2500 UK government plug-in grant that is applicable for electric vehicles under £35,000, simply due to the luxury market that Audi specifically targets. Therefore, the Q4 e-tron will sit around the price of £50,000, with less powerful models being at the cheaper end of the spectrum, and the more powerful versions, such as the Sportback, residing at the more expensive terminal. 

Regardless of the substantial price tag attached, the Q4 e-tron and the haste with which Audi elected to promulgate information, reflects the direction that the company and the rest of the VW Group are taking, and that is in the direction of electrification and automation. So whilst it may not be revolutionary by the standards of electric vehicles and may not have been assembled and designed with the intention of stealing a market dominated by companies such as Tesla, the Q4 e-tron represents Audi’s commitment to e-mobility and their understanding that it is incontrovertibly the future, in which the market for luxury electric vehicles and electric SUVs will only continue to grow.

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