Whether we like it or not, electric cars are the future, and that means in a few years, whether you want a small car or an SUV, the chances are it’s going to have to be electric.
Of course, there are a few hurdles to overcome first, and to be honest some seriously talented petrol diesel and hybrid cars are still on sale. but if an electric car suits your needs and you’ve got the deepest of deep pockets what is the ultimate EV? Could this be it?
The new Audi e-Tron GT. It’s the brand’s flagship saloon and you guessed it; it’s electric. There are two models to choose from the standard GT and the RS.
Both are luxurious quiet and comfortable and neither is slow. So if you have near unlimited funds we’re talking $120000 plus is this the finest future-proofed car you can buy?
Nothing turns heads like this car did yesterday. I was at a charging point filling it with some juice and a guy in a Honda CRV came up to me and said do you want to swap? I mean, of course, he said that.
And then this morning on the freeway two guys in a Tesla pulled up alongside me cellphone in hand looking at this thing’s sleek four-door body and I know styling is subjective but this thing soaks it all in.
That futuristic look doesn’t stop when you get in. It’s just a beautifully cohesive piece of design. The dials are not that different from what you’ll get in an A3 or a Q5 but they still look great.
And where we’re used to the level of quality and customization which is pretty much unrivaled anywhere in the market. the central screen can feel a little a bit ponderous if you leave the haptic feedback on but otherwise, it looks and feels great.
You get Apple Carplay and android auto as standard while you get some proper physical climate control buttons. It’s not perfect though. the driving position is lovely, you do get to sit nice and low but ergonomically there are a few things that aren’t quite right.
The cup holders get in the way there’s not a normal gear leaver that you have to interact with but it just doesn’t feel comfortable and you can’t then put your cup in the door pockets when you’re done with it because they are weirdly shallow and a little bit wide so it rolls around.
The middle central storage area, well it’s not useful for anything more than a set of keys. As we mentioned, there are currently two e-Tron GT models to choose from each of which is available in a range of trims.
Personally, we’d stick with the entry-level GT which comes with led lights, 20-inch wheels, and Quattro all-wheel-drive. Plus all the interior tech and smartphone connectivity you’d expect. Four sprung models like ours add different wheels, air suspension, and a Bang Olufsen stereo. Lovely but not worth the extra 25k.
I know we’ve not run through the performance figures just yet but you’d expect a car like this to be seriously fun to drive, and you wouldn’t be wrong. The e-Tron shares a lot of its parts with Porsche’s first electric car the Tycan which is a great base to start with. It’s sharp and it’s comfortable, it’s quiet so long as you leave the sound synthesizer off. And it’s fast, really fast.
The entry-level model gets 469 brake horsepower and 0 to 62 miles an hour in 4.1 seconds. And to think that the RS mod. el gets another 120 horsepower and slashes the 0-62 miles an hour time by almost a second.
But like the Tycan or the Tesla Model S, it’s the way the e-Tron develops its power and puts it down on the road, that takes your breath away. It’s like someone’s taken your insides, your stomach and left them on the road behind you.
Of course, grip and Audi’s Quattro helps traction an all-wheel-drive system that has been updated for the brand’s all-electric future. It just makes the car feel so agile and light on its toes, something which e-Tron does not deserve to be because this thing weighs just shy of two and a half tons.
Understandably that weight affects efficiency. Audi claims with a 93-kilowatt-hour battery the e-Tron will return a range between 283 and 298 miles, depending on which model you go for.
Our test version is officially the best of the lot, though, in our experience, even gentle motorway cruising only returns a range of around 240 to 250 miles, or a good chunk less if you make regular use of all that power. It doesn’t benefit from the kind of strong regenerative braking we’ve become so accustomed to either.
If you’re used to something like a BMW i3 which slows quite dramatically when you lift off the accelerator, you’ll have to get used to using a normal brake pedal again. Thankfully this car will charge faster than almost anything else on sale.
Okay, you’ll need the right rapid charger, but find one capable of Audi’s 270 kilowatts maximum and you’re looking at a 10 to 80 percent charge well over 200 miles in just 23 minutes.
For context, that’s more than five times as fast as a Renault Zoe will charge for only three times the price. Topping up each one at home takes longer though due to the sheer size of this car’s battery. A seven kilowatt home war box will do the job in around 13 and a half hours overnight, even if the battery is completely flat.
The e-Tron GT has two trunks, one at the back and one at the front. we’ll start at the front because this is where I’ve been keeping the charging cables.
It’s not the biggest space in the world but it keeps the wires out of the way and there’s probably enough room in there to keep another soft bag should you need to.
Moving around to the rear. Audi says that this rear trunk measures 405 liters but that compromises its saloon opening. You can fit one maybe one and a half suitcases in there but it’s just not practical enough and if you go for the RS version it shrinks to 350 liters. You wonder why people buy SUVs.
Rear Seating Area
And the compromises continue inside. It’s not disastrously tight in the rear passenger seats, but I’m just over six feet tall and I’m pushed for space in pretty much every direction. I certainly wouldn’t want to be sat in the middle seat for long.
Kids will be fine in the rea,r although getting child seats in is another matter entirely because those doors are long and they don’t open all that wide. You’ve got the convenience features like the heated seats and the three-zone clone control, plus some vents for the rear seat occupants. But there aren’t any USB ports and that could prove a problem if you’ve got young kids.
Thanks to its Porsche part sharing this is as close as you’ll get to a pure electric sports car for the time being. If you enjoy driving It’s right up there with the very best petrol performance saloons. Audi knows how to do interiors from the A1 to e-Tron quality is faultless.
The e-Tron leads the way when it comes to fast charging. A 10 to 80 percent charge returns more than 200 miles of range and given the right plug It takes just 23 minutes. Despite being a four-door five-seater practicality is an area you will need to compromise on, space in the back isn’t great and the boot is tight.
The big battery makes up for it but don’t forget to calculate how much you’ll be spending on charging the e-Tron. It will use almost twice as much electricity as something like a mini electric.
If you are a car enthusiast mourning the death of the petrol engine then take a seat in one of these. You’ll have to think if it’s a kind of two plus two sports car with a pair of occasional rear seats and a smallish boot. But in terms of quality, in terms of refinement, in terms of performance, this Audi e-Tron GT is sublime.
- New Audi e-Tron GT In-Depth Review The Good Bad And Ugly PartsThe new Audi e-Tron GT. It’s the brand’s flagship saloon and you guessed it; it’s electric. There are two models to choose from the standard GT and the RS.