Audi reveals the E-Tron’s full specifications ahead of its market launch

2019 audi e tron first drive press 2

Audi is preparing to release the E-Tron, its first series-produced electric car, in the United States. The company announced the model’s full specifications — including its driving range — and confirmed that reservation holders will start receiving their car in May 2019.

Engineers developed the E-Tron as an electric car from the get-go. There is not a gasoline-powered engine anywhere in sight. Digital Trends drove it, and we walked away impressed by its normal-ness — it’s a good car that happens to be electric. Power comes from a pair of electric motors that zap the four wheels with 360 horsepower and 413 pound-feet of torque in standard driving conditions. Those figures go up to 402 and 489, respectively, when a temporary overboost function kicks in. The motors draw electricity from a 95-kWh lithium-ion battery pack which uses about 88 percent of its capacity to deliver 204 miles of range, according to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

Audi could have unlocked more range, but it decided to play it safe. Its research shows E-Tron owners will charge at home about 85 percent of the time, so engineers developed the lithium-ion battery pack with maximum longevity — not maximum range — in mind. The company wasn’t interested in winning bragging rights in the numbers war, because it predicts an overwhelming majority of E-Tron owners will leave their garage with a full charge, and drive an average of 30 miles per day. Demanding less from the pack also ensures the powertrain delivers repeatable performance.

The German firm’s avant-garde approach to electrification doesn’t end there. An Audi representative pointed out to Digital Trends that there’s no sense in quoting how long it takes to charge the battery from zero to 80 percent because the odds of a motorist completely draining a battery are low. This is a lesson learned from the world of smartphones: Users don’t wait until their device turns itself off to find a plug. Instead, the company highlights real-world statistics like 54 miles of range in 10 minutes, and 163 miles of range in 30 minutes when using 150-kilowatt public chargers.

Above all, Audi wants to make going electric as straightforward as possible. Motorists who don’t have a home charger can get one through a partnership between Audi and Amazon. The retail giant helps them find the right charger, and sends a professional to install it in a manner that’s both safe and timely. In the car, an EV-specific variant of Audi’s dual-screen MMI Touch Response infotainment system shows drivers where they can go before they need to find a plug. The navigation software points out the location of charging stations, and it tells motorists how much range they will have left when they reach their destination. To sweeten the deal, every E-Tron buyer receives 1,000 kWh of free charging to redeem on the growing Electrify America network of charging station. That’s about 2,000 miles of driving.

Audi will begin shipping the E-Tron to American reservation holders in May 2019. That’s also when the model will arrive in showrooms. Pricing starts at $74,800 before a $7,500 federal tax credit enters the equation.

Cars

Your electric, 610-hp Aston Martin sport sedan has arrived, Mr. Bond

At least four years in the making, the electric Aston Martin Rapide E made its global debut during the 2019 Shanghai Auto Show. It leaves the V12 behind, and adopts a battery-powered drivetrain that delivers 610 hp and 700 lb-ft. of torque.
Cars

The Audi AI:me concept shows how a self-driving city car can fight boredom

Audi unveiled a concept named AI:me at the 2019 Shanghai Auto Show. It explores what an electric, autonomous, connected city car could be. It fights boredom with an on-board VR set while taking Audi's tech-savvy interiors to new heights.
Cars

Volkswagen ID Roomzz concept has rear lights you can customize with an app

Volkswagen unveiled the ID Roomzz concept at the 2019 Shanghai Auto Show. It takes the form of an Atlas-sized SUV with a high-tech, lounge-like interior and an electric powertrain. The Roomzz will enter series production in 2021.
Cars

2020 Audi S6 and S7 aim to boost performance without sacrificing fuel economy

The 2020 Audi S6 and S7 are sportier versions of the Audi A6 sedan and A7 fastback, respectively. Both cars use a mild-hybrid powertrain, which generates 450 horsepower in U.S. spec.
Cars

2020 Nissan 370Z Special Edition celebrates 50 Years of the Z car

Nissan is celebrating 50 years of its iconic "Z car" with a special edition of the 2020 370Z. The 50th-anniversary model is dressed to look like a 1970s race car, but remains technically unchanged.
Cars

2020 Cadillac CT5 luxury sedan gets turbocharged power, chiseled looks

The 2020 Cadillac CT5 proves the General Motors luxury brand still cares about sedans. Debuting at the 2019 New York Auto Show, it features Cadillac's Super Cruise tech and a lineup of turbocharged engines.
Cars

2020 Lincoln Corsair crossover is small in size, but big on luxury

The 2020 Lincoln Corsair made its public debut at the 2019 New York Auto Show. It replaces the MKC as the smallest crossover in Lincoln's lineup and shares underpinnings with the 2020 Ford Escape.
Cars

Genesis’ all-electric Mint concept proves small cars can still be stylish

Unveiled ahead of the 2019 New York Auto Show, the Genesis Mint concept is a future electric city car with scissor doors in place of a traditional hatchback. Genesis likely won't put it into production, however.
Cars

Drywall or kayaks? The 2020 Toyota Highlander is ready for your weekend plans

Toyota introduced the 2020 Highlander ahead of its public debut at the 2019 New York Auto Show. The fourth-generation Highlander is bigger than its predecessor, and it comes with more tech features, including Android Auto and Apple CarPlay.
Cars

More tech and more space make the Mercedes-Benz GLS the S-Class of the SUV world

Mercedes-Benz introduced the second-generation GLS at the 2019 New York Auto Show. The company's biggest and most luxurious SUV gains more tech features in its quest to become the S-Class of the SUV world.
Cars

2020 Ford Escape gets sleeker styling, greener powertrains, more tech

The 2020 Ford Escape gets redesigned for the first time since the 2013 model year. Ford brought back the hybrid powertrain, and is adding a plug-in hybrid option for the first time.
Cars

The 2020 Subaru Outback wants to take you to (and teach you about) the outdoors

The Outback is one of Subaru's most significant models, so the Japanese firm couldn't afford to make a mistake when it overhauled the model. The sixth-generation Outback is still rugged but more user-friendly than ever before.
Cars

The 2020 Hyundai Sonata Turbo shows value and performance can go hand in hand

The 2020 Hyundai Sonata goes in a bold new design direction, with LED streaks on its hood and sleeker bodywork all around. It starkly contrasts with the current Sonata's conservative design.
Cars

With drift mode, Kia’s Stinger GTS lets you unleash your inner hooligan

Debuting at the 2019 New York Auto Show, the limited-edition Kia Stinger GTS gets a trick all-wheel drive system that should enable plenty of sideways action. But only 800 buyers will get to try it.