- Beautiful interior
- Excellent entertainment system
- Very comfortable in a straight line
- Useful safety features
- Heavy handling
- High purchase price
- Lumpy in the city
- Limited range
The Audi e-tron is an impressively hefty block of German engineering, positioned between the Q5 and Q7 in terms of overall bulk. It also comes with a hefty price tag of up to £74,000 – and that’s before customisation. First revealed as a concept car at the Frankfurt Motor Show in 2015, the Audi e-tron finally landed with German consumers in March 2019. Despite multiple issues around the launch, including an extensive delay in getting the car’s software certified by the German transport authorities (KBA), sales of the car have been pretty strong in several countries, including Norway and The Netherlands.
Customer feedback on the original e-tron has already been taken on board by Audi, and it is planning a revised Sportback version to arrive in the market during Q2 of 2020. With that in mind, we decided to take out the existing Audi e-tron 50 Quattro Technik (which is closer to £60,000) for a test with two agendas in mind: First evaluate the car in its own right, given the low priced leasing deals that seem to be on offer at the moment and second, to lay down a marker for the new Sportback when it finally lands. Price and value are two different things. Does the new pricing on the Audi e-tron represent good value?
Price and Options
We decided to test the entry-level spec Technik model, which starts at a shade under £60,000, while the top Launch Edition has a baseline price closer to £72,000, with Sport and S line versions in between. There are differences in trim level, but even the most basic model comes with electric seats, high quality interior and entertainment built-in. If you prefer black, then you are in luck, as it’s the only paint option that doesn’t require a supplement of at least £750.
The sound system offers 180 watts of amplification, channelled through 10 speakers, including a subwoofer. You get the Audi Virtual Cockpit and MMI Navigation Plus systems as well – providing SatNav from a supplied SIM and customisable instrument display. You also get basic cruise control and assistance with parking and some help with braking as well as lane-departure warnings.
If you have an additional £1,895 available, then you can add the Comfort and Sound Pack, which gives you a more powerful Head Up Display, RGB internal lighting, 16-speaker B&O sound system and 360 degree camera. For £2,200 more you can get Night Vision Assistance. There are no battery options, however. All 50 quattro versions come with a 71kWh battery as standard for a range of around 186 miles. If you need a range that’s just over 200 miles, then you will need the more expensive 55 quattro instead, with its 95kWh battery.
When we tested the car, there were business leases (ex VAT) with a 5,000 mile allowance at just over the £300 mark. As we write the conclusion, these have disappeared and we're seeing leases with 10,000 miles closer to £444 a month – it's certainly a good idea to shop around. Also, its worth holding off on a business lease until after 6th April 2020, where the BiK should drop to zero. Overall, it's an expensive car to purchase, but there are some very affordable leasing options and you must remember that ‘filling the tank' at home will cost you less than £10.