The future has arrived. Audi introduced us at the end of 2018 to its new all-electric vehicle, named the Audi e-tron. E-tron simply means ‘enjoyment while driving’. And this is for sure something to enjoy!

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Audi Q5 Hybrid

What Is e-Tron?

Many people still do not fully understand the concept of the e-tron and still compares it to hybrid vehicles. A hybrid is a car that is powered by a conventional engine, an electric motor and a hybrid battery. Hybrid vehicles can switch between the petrol engine and electric motor, or combine both power sources depending on the driving scenario.

The e-tron name describes vehicles that is all electric and fully dependent of electric power. It also describes vehicles that is featuring plug-in and fast-charging convenience, advanced energy recuperation whilst driving and of course, zero emissions.

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Audi e-tron at charging station

Built at the carbon-neutral Audi Brussels plant – the world’s only carbon-neutral premium car manufacturing plant – the name Audi e-tron has become synonymous with the ultimate in all-electric mobility.

Different e-tron Models

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Audi SUV e-tron model

e-tron SUV

The e-tron is the first all-electric vehicle from Audi. It is a full-sized, luxury SUV. This is to be considered as the ‘family friendly’ EV, due to its space and luxury.

Audi e-tron Sportback

The Audi e-tron Sportback has an automotive style, fully battery electric technology and zero emission motoring. Still considered to be just as comfortable and economic for a family car.

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Audi e-tron Sportback
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Audi e-tron GT

Audi e-tron GT

The Audi e-tron GT is a modern-day demonstration of sport and luxury. It is definitely an eye catcher on the road. Of course it can be used for having some fun on the open road or driving along traffic.

Audi RS e-tron GT

Never before has an RS model been so full of energy as the Audi RS e-tron GT. The RS e-tron GT is known for its technical brilliance that goes far beyond anything that can be expressed as performance data.

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Audi RS e-tron GT

Audi e-tron in Cape Town SA

Audi South Africa has officially launched its e-tron range in South Africa. In February 2022 Audi launched six new electric vehicles (EVs) in Cape Town, headlined by the RS e-tron GT.

This event was also the launchpad for Audi SA as they adopt e-mobility, no wonder it was called the ‘Nigh of Progress’.

Head of Audi SA, Sascha Sauer said that never has any automotive brand anywhere in the world launched this many electric vehicles in one go. And so, (the launch) was a historic moment not just for the Audi brand, but for South Africa too. By accelerating our transition towards e-mobility, we are fully embracing Audi’s global mission in transforming towards being a provider of premium sustainable mobility and in line with our Brand’s global commitments towards the Paris Climate Agreement.

Audi SA also confirmed that they will be launching at least one new EV per year.

Audi's Electrical Charge

Audi South Africa has partnered with GridCars to establish the most extensive electric network in the country. To make public charging more accessible for prospective e-tron owners, Audi has partnered with GridCars to provide access to over 280 “universal charge point connectors” across the country. GridCars partnered with Jaguar in the past, but Audi says that their relationship with the EV infrastructure body is the biggest in the country.

One of the main players in the South African EV space is GridCars. Established in 2009, GridCars has grown to become South Africa’s largest Electric Vehicle Charging Service Equipment (EVSE), Charging Station Infrastructure and Management Systems firm.

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Sauer also said that Audi has  partnered with GridCars and invested in building the largest and fastest electric vehicle public charging network in the country. The charging network is headlined by four 150kW DC super-charging stations erected across the country.

Future charging stations in South Africa:

  • Four 150kW (DC) ultra-fast charging stations, enabling +/- 340km in 30 minutes. These are planned for placement along major highway routes such as the N1, N2, N3 and N4.

 

  • Five 80kW (DC) fast-charging stations, enabling +/- 185km in 30 minutes, also planned for location on major highway routes such as the N1, N2, N3, and N4. One of these chargers will close a long-standing gap (Richmond) in the route between Johannesburg and Cape Town.

 

  • Twenty-four 22kW (AC) fast-charging stations, enabling +/- 100km in about one hour, at public lifestyle and recreational venues across the country and as part of Audi’s destination charging strategy.

 

Additionally, customers who buy an e-tron will receive a complimentary industrial home-charging socket to the value of R5,000 – with additional charging options also available directly from Audi.

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Firts Audi e-tron- Frankfurt 2009

Firts Audi e-tron

The first e-tron concept car was shown at the 2009 International Motor Show Germany. A two-seater, similar in appearance to the Audi R8 but slightly smaller.

hereafter, in 2010 Audi began a development program with the objective to manufacture a limited production R8 e-tron. The R8 e-tron made a brief appearance in the 2013 Marvel Studios release of Iron Man 3.

 

In May 2013, Audi decided to cancel production of all electric vehicles after developing 10 prototypes for research and development purposes, due to its limited all-electric range as battery technology had not advanced as quickly as Audi had expected, making the R8 e-tron unviable for series production.  In March 2014, Audi reconsidered their decision and agreed to build the R8 e-tron on special request.

Battery Life Of The e-tron

The Audi e-tron is estimated to last around 250 miles, which is approximately 400km, in a trip. If you average 15,000 miles per year, which is about 24000km you can expect 10 to 15 years of reliable service before needing a new battery replacement.

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Audi e-tron battery concept

Of course, like any other vehicle, there is advantages (pros) and disadvantages (cons) of buying it. But one always dominates the other. In this case, there are so many advantages of buying any Audi e-tron model.

Here are the top reasons for buying the e-tron:

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1. Excellent Power Capability

This is a main reason why the e-tron could be a game changer. It has a very high level of performance. People might be surprised to learn that the 2021 Audi e-tron can generate more than 300kW. It can have nearly 500 pound-feet of torque, and it can hit a top speed of 200km+ per hour.   

The e-tron also has ‘Boost mode’. It’s a special setting that can be accessed by selecting the Sport driving mode and depressing the right pedal as far as it can go. When Boost mode is engaged, the SUV can achieve its full potential for a short period of time. It would be fun to use Boost mode on an open highway or long, straight country road.

2. Can handle heavy tow loads

When travelling with a caravan or boat, the e-tron can do it all. It has a towing capacity of 2000kg+. Although it is not advisable to use the e-tron as an everyday heavy-duty vehicle, it will come handy when it’s needed to work.

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3. All-wheel drive ‘Quattro’

The e-tron is ready to react is every situation. When the vehicle is travelling on a straight road, most of its power is sent to the rear wheel. But, when reaching a turn or wet roads power is being distributed to all 4 wheels.

Four-wheel-drive help vehicles to maintain traction on the road.

4. Plenty of Sapce

Many SUV’s look big, until it’s time to pack for the weekend away. Fortunately, Audi has given its electric SUV a spacious cabin. In the front and back there’s over 100cm of leg room. Larger passengers should be able to fit comfortably in the second row.

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5. "Lasting Long"

When traveling on a long road, there are some concerns of the battery life type of outlet. There are more and more public charging stations that e-tron drivers can utilize. There’s also an app that can be used to find nearby stations.

6. Care about your Comfort

There are four different temperature zones in the e-tron. In the winter, standard heated seats and a heater steering wheel can add to the coziness in the cabin. In the summer, front passengers in select e-tron trims can turn on their seat’s ventilation systems.

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7. Safety first

The main purpose of an automaker is to build safe and reliable vehicles. Audi has certainly met those requirements with the e-tron.

All e-trons have Audi pre sense front, and they can sense when there’s about to be a frontal collision. This leads to the vehicle hitting the brake automatically to prevent accidents. The vehicle can make it much less likely to back into another vehicle or change lanes when there’s someone in a blind spot. With the parking system in the Audi, drivers can be alerted when they’re getting too close to other vehicles in front or behind them. The available 360-degree perspective is very useful as well.

8. Advanced technology out of this world

It seems like the e-tron has a high-tech feature in every one of its curves and corners. Starting in the back of the vehicle, there’s a power tailgate that’s quite convenient. Behind the steering wheel, there’s a digital instrument panel that Audi calls its virtual cockpit. Navigation is standard, as is smartphone connectivity. The screen kind of acts like a showpiece, and through it, people can access certain apps, control music playback, make calls, and more. Even the headlights have cool features built into them, as they have bright LEDs and can have animation.

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reasons why people would re-consider buying the e-tron.

1. All 'Electric'

People tend to doubt the idea of ‘all electric’. They feel more comfortable with the idea of a hybrid vehicle, which can be charged or can run on fuel. People tend to feel safer knowing there is a back-up plan, should something happen or fail.

2. Expensive Price Tag

With all the luxury and accessories, a simple e-tron can be costs almost $80,000, which is approximately R1223928,00. These numbers are more than a little high from the perspective of the average consumer. And with time, maintenance is also necessary and also make this vehicle more expensive.

As a Volkswagen and Audi repair centre, VAG Spec Centre is looking forward to learn more about these electric vehicles and to eventually work on it ourselves. There are no doubts that Audi is changing the future of the automotive world. And not even to mention the luxury and comfort is provides for their buyers.

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