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Impressive standard infotainment system
Quattro is standard making for easy handling
Competitors achieve longer range
Competitors are quicker
Audi's first foray into the electric vehicle arena has been a roaring success - the E-Tron is a gorgeous car with an excellent electric range. Unlike other manufacturers, the E-Tron doesn't need to scream and shout that it's "special" and electric. There's no gimmicky styling to make it look uber-futuristic. Audi have taken design elements from their existing line-up and made the E-Tron SUV look just like one of the gang.
Equipped with two powerful electric motors and a 95kwh battery, the E-Tron boasts impressive horsepower and torque stats. It lags ever so slightly behind its closest alternatives, the Mercedes EQC and Jaguar I-Pace, but not in a way you'd notice much on your ordinary commute. Handling and suspension are both very good, offering a lovely relaxing drive despite the car's heavy weight!
Charging times are quick enough and, with the car offering up to 250 miles of electric range, you're highly unlikely to find yourself trapped on the side of the road with no juice.
As you'd expect with an Audi, special attention has been paid to the interior of the E-Tron. It's reminiscent of the Audi Q5 with the level of tech taken up a notch. The cabin has a total of five screens - two infotainment system touchscreens, Virtual Cockpit screen, and two screens on the front passenger doors to display the view of the side view cameras. Materials used in the cabin are good quality, save for a few bits here and there which are a little scratchy and cheap-looking.
In terms of practicality, the boot space is generous at 615 litres, plus you get a lovely little 60 litre "frunk" to hide away your charging cables. Passenger room is decent, with comfortable wide seats and good headroom. Legroom in the rear seats is a little cramped, mostly for the middle passenger, but as long as you're not transporting three 6-footers around, you'll be fine!
Aside from the pricey upfront cost of the E-Tron, running costs won't break the bank. It's very expensive to insure and Audi aren't deemed the most reliable manufacturer so repair costs could rack up, but charging costs are around half of what you'd pay for a traditional petrol and diesel car. Plus, with zero emissions, if you're looking for a company car, it's a great option - you pay zero Benefit in Kind tax for 2020!
Overall, the E-Tron is a great electric car bearing a premium badge. If you're looking for an eco-friendly family car or if you’re looking to cut company car tax with an electric vehicle company car, the E-Tron is a sensible choice. Check out the rest of this E-Tron car review for more details!
The entry level S Line trim comes with 21-inch 9.5J '5-arm turbine' contrasting grey design alloy wheels and Audi matrix LED headlights with dynamic front and rear indicators. Adaptive sport suspension comes as standard.
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The special Launch Edition trim comes with 21-inch 9.0J '5-V-spoke star' design Audi Sport alloy wheels with platinum-look gloss. It comes equipped with Audi beam puddle lights with the E-Tron logo, Virtual Door Mirrors, and Black Styling pack.
Looking for an Electric car personal or business lease?, we compile the best leasing offers across England, Wales and the rest of the UK. Check out our Audi E-Tron lease deals page for our latest pricing.
The E-Tron Sportback doesn’t look like your typical electric car. No quirky, crazy styling that sets it completely apart from the rest of the manufacturer’s range (we’re looking at you, BMW i3…). The Audi E-Tron Sportback looks surprisingly normal, and not a far cry from the Q5 or Q7.
This was Audi’s intention. To normalise the new Audi electric car, Audi set out to achieve what they call “concept clarity” where they made the car look as “normal” as possible to persuade regular SUV fans to hop on board the E-Tron powertrain.
The electric Audi has coupe-esque styling, bears the hatchback name, but is more like an SUV. It’s elegant and muscular at the same time. Styled with a high-gloss pack with window trims in aluminium plus contrast finish bumpers in Manhattan grey and LED headlights with function on demand preparation, it is futuristic yet contemporary. The flat sweeping roof is sleek and improves aerodynamics, ensuring you get the most power out of the electric powertrain.
It is a gorgeous car, in true Audi style.
If you’re new to the world of electric vehicles and you’re concerned the switch will negatively affect the driving experience, the E-Tron will prove you wrong.
Getting in a comfortable driving position with a great view of the road isn’t a difficult task in the E-Tron.
Front seat passengers will be very comfortable. With heated, electrically adjustable front seats with driver memory function and 4-way electric lumbar support, you’ll never struggle to find a sweet position.
The front pillars are slim so they don’t obstruct your view of the road.
Obviously, there is no traditional ICE engine in an electric car, so the format of this Audi E-Tron review will vary from our others!
The E-Tron is currently based on the MLB Evo Platform which the Q7 and Q8 use. The car has two electric motors, one on each axle, which are powered by a 700kg 95.3-kWh lithium-ion battery pack. The rear axle is slightly more powerful than the front, but combined they produce 355bhp and 414 lb-ft of torque. The Jaguar I-Pace manages 394bhp and Mercedes EQC, 402bhp, so whilst still powerful, the Audi E-Tron lags behind a little.
The battery can charge at a rate of up to 150kW. At a fast-charger, it’ll take around 50 minutes to get a “full tank” (30 minutes to 80% full) or 9 hours at an AC public 11kW charger. Hooked up to your AC 7kW home wallbox, you’re looking at 14 hours charging time.
Electric cars are known for their impressively quick 0-62mph performance times and the E-Tron is no different. It manages the sprint in just 5.7 seconds - fantastic for a car of its weight and size!
This peak performance comes in short 8 second bursts, however - to preserve the battery life, it functions at 306hp. It can reach a top speed of 124mph.
The E-Tron is a heavy car. A very heavy car. It weighs almost 2,500kg, which brings it in at 300kg heavier than the Jaguar I-Pace and 150kg more than the Tesla Model X.
Despite its weight, it handles well, though it isn’t as sprightly as its competitors. It has a nice low centre of gravity and excellent grip thanks to the standard Audi quattro all-wheel drive.
Adaptive air suspension comes as standard and the system is electronically regulated to ensure ride comfort is prioritised in all driving situations.
It’s one of the most relaxing electric SUV driving experiences and teamed with an array of standard and optional driver assistance systems, it’s one of the best in class!
Audi E-Tron Sportback Interior
When it comes to interiors, Audi knows exactly what they’re doing. The E-Tron Sportback doesn’t veer too far from Audi’s traditional interior winning formula.
If you haven’t already seen inside the Audi E-Tron, picture the Q7 but a few generations into the future.
The cabin is adorned with twin leather seats as standard, soft touch plastics and brushed metal effect trims. Trim up and you’ll get Valcona leather seats and illuminated E-Tron badges on the door openings, as well as a panoramic sunroof.
However premium it may look on first inspection, the E-Tron is not without its styling flaws. There is some scratchy, brittle plastics around the centre console and the glove box lid which we’re not big fans of. You’d be hard pushed to find material of that quality even in the Audi A3 Saloon. But these are just minor details - the overall look is very chic, not shabby.
The infotainment system gives us vibes of stepping on to the Starship Enterprise. Unlike other models in the Audi range, it comes with not one, not two, not three - but five screens.
As standard, the E-Tron comes with MMI Navigation Plus with MMI Touch and Audi Virtual Cockpit. This takes the form of a 10.1-inch and 8.6-inch full HD touch screen where you can control all your basics like radio, sat-nav, climate control, and the likes. You also get a 12.3-inch Virtual Cockpit LCD display which sits neatly behind the driver’s wheel. On the side of each front door, you’ve got your final two screens which are used to display the view from the side view cameras.
The MMI system is controlled solely by touch which many drivers won’t be a fan of. With other models in the Audi line-up, you have the choice of the touchscreen or control with a rotary dial situated between the front two seats. Relying on the touchscreen makes navigating the menus a little fiddly when you’re on the move, but the Virtual Cockpit helps a little.
In addition, the E-Tron is kitted out with the Audi Sound System and Audi Music Interface, Audi Connect, DAB digital radio, and Audi Phone Box with wireless charging. For the ultimate musical experience, we recommend ditching the basic 180W 10 speaker radio for the 705W 16 speaker Bang & Olufsen Premium Sound System. It really ties it all together!
Big cars equal big boots and loads of passenger room. The E-Tron Sportback largely follows this formula and is a good option if you’re looking for a practical electric car.
4,901 (L) x 1,935 (W) x 1,629 (H)
At 615 litres, the boot space serves everyone well, making for an excellent family car. You’ve got more than enough room to pack the whole family’s suitcases comfortably and it’s plenty of room for a massive weekly shop. With the seats down, you get 1,665 litres of space.
And as if that wasn’t enough, there’s also a 60 litre “frunk” under the bonnet which will fit a large-ish soft bag - though you’ll most likely use it as a home for the charging cables.
Despite being such a large vehicle, there is no 7 seater option in the E-Tron Sportback - if you need more passenger room, you’d be best looking at the Tesla Model X!
The rear seats aren’t quite as comfortable as the front, particularly for the middle passenger. The middle occupant hasn’t got a great deal of legroom - the centre console eats into it. Rear passengers also can’t adjust their seats like in other best in class SUVs, so they have to pray that the front passengers don’t have super long legs.
Headroom is decent. The panoramic sunroof is optional but even with it, nobody will be brushing their head against it.
In Euro NCAP safety testing, the E-Tron received a full 5 stars, with a 91% adult occupant and 85% child occupant rating.
The E-Tron is also kitted out with all sorts of other safety tech goodies. Audi Pre Sense Front and basic monitors for collision hazards. Seat belt tightening and automatic closing of windows and sunroof if an impending collision is detected. Lane Departure Warning and Cruise Control system with speed limiting. Parking System Plus with a 360 degree display and rear view camera. The list goes on, and that’s just what comes standard.
For parents with small kids, there are multiple ISOFIX child seat fixings and the raised height of the vehicle makes it easy to install them.
It’s an electric car - running costs will be low, low, low! But there are other costs that can rack up with the E-Tron Sportback.
Zap Map estimates that the cost to charge at home would be £13.30, working out at 5.4p/mile. On a public charger, this is a bit more expensive at £22.80 to 80% charge, so 9.3p/mile. Compare this to average running costs per mile for petrol or diesel (12-15p) and you’re making a decent saving.
We doubt you’ve got this far through the review without clocking on, but the E-Tron produces zero emissions.
This is good news for businesses as for the 2020/21 year, electric cars are being charged 0% BIK rate, compared to 16% last year. In the following year, it’ll be 1% and the next year after that, 2%, so it’s a sensible option for a company car.
This is by no means a cheap car to insure. The E-Tron is firmly planted in insurance Group 49 of 50. Ouch!
|Cheapest Trim||Lowest Insurance Group||RRP|
|Audi E-tron Sportback S Line||£69,045|
|Audi E-tron Sportback Vorsprung||£84,245|
Audi itself is not considered a particularly reliable manufacturer overall. When it comes to Audi reliability, the Reliability Index places it 34th out of 40 manufacturers. RI doesn’t list reliability information for the E-Tron itself.
In 2019, some of the first E-Trons (only around 31 cars) were recalled due to risk of fire but this isn’t something potential buyers need to worry about today.
The E-Tron is covered by a 3 year, 60,000 mile Audi warranty. This is decent enough but other manufacturers offer better. BMW and Mercedes both offer a 3 year warranty with no mileage limit, and Jaguar outshines them all with 5 years and 60,000 miles. The battery is protected for 8 years.
To keep the E-Tron Sportback in tip-top condition, you’ll need to pay for regular servicing at an Audi-approved garage. Audi recommends a fixed service schedule for short distance drivers - you should service every year or every 9,000 miles, whichever comes first.
For long distance, motorway drivers, Audi recommends a Flexible schedule of every two years or 19,000 miles.
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