Audi confirms entry-level electric car to sit below Q4 e-tron
The new Audi EV will form part of the firm’s plan to have a pure-electric car in each core sector by 2027
Audi boss Markus Duesmann has confirmed that the brand will launch an entry-level electric car to sit below the Q4 e-tron SUV – and it’ll be here within the next four years.
Speaking at the brand’s annual media conference, Duesmann said: “We have set the course to go 100 per cent electric. By 2027, we seek to offer an all-electric vehicle in each core segment. We recently decided to launch an additional electric entry-level model below the Audi Q4 e-tron as well.”
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Given the Volkswagen Group’s investment commitments with the MEB platform for EVs, Audi’s new entry-level car could be based on this technology. However, with the VW Group’s SSP (Scalable Systems Platform) set to come online by this point, the new car may be one of the first models on this new architecture.
Duesmann has previously outlined that with a “unified cell format” as per other battery models outlined by key VW Group execs, a range in excess of 400 miles is possible, with up to 435 miles likely.
SSP’s proposed 800v electronic architecture would also allow for faster charging speeds – possibly up to 270kW – than the current maximum 170kW rate the 400v MEB platform can offer. This means around 80 miles of range could be added when plugged in for 10 minutes and the tech would also appear on other future Audi models.
It has not been outlined if both a hatchback and a compact SUV will be part of the plans for this new, smaller model. With a facelifted version of the combustion-engined A3 hatchback set to make its debut later this year, however, the ICE car’s projected lifecycle could end around the same point that the new entry-level EV is due to appear. It’s not yet known if this all-new car will take the A3 name.
It’s also possible that a smaller electric SUV based on the same underpinnings, occupying a similar space in the line-up to the current Q3, will arrive to sit beneath the larger Q4 e-tron.
Audi is undergoing a revamp of its naming structure, with ICE models set to take odd numbers and EVs being branded with even numbers. It means that the current A4 will become the A5 and the A6 will transfer to A7, making way for the A4 e-tron and A6 e-tron respectively. If Audi was to continue with this naming convention for its next generation of products, it could see a revival of the A2 name for its new entry-level EV.
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This new car is part of a huge electric product offensive from Audi, with Duesmann highlighting that “We are on the verge of the biggest product initiative in our history. By 2025, we will have launched around 20 new models, more than 10 of which will be all-electric.”
These include the brand’s Q6 e-tron SUV and Q6 e-tron Sportback, which we’ll probably see revealed early next year, as well as the firm’s A6 e-tron, which is set to be available in both Sportback saloon and Avant estate body styles. All of these cars will also be available in sportier S and RS forms.
It’s also likely that the Q4 e-tron will be updated at some point – possibly as early as this year – while it’s thought than an e-tron GT update is set to arrive in time, too. Finally, Audi’s Grandsphere luxury electric concept will arrive in the second half of the decade as a new range flagship for the brand.
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