The most recent electric SUV to enter the market was the Audi e-tron, and since we sampled it on the first drive review, we came out mighty impressed. However, now the e-tron has been launched officially, and as we had mentioned earlier, it has arrived in three forms.
The first is the e-tron 50, which starts at Rs 99.99 lakh. It gets a smaller battery rated at 71kWh that is good for 313bhp and 540Nm. Naturally, the battery range is less too, as the e-tron 50 gets a claimed range between 264-379km on a full charge.
Performance isn’t as good as the bigger 55 versions, but a 0-100kph time of 6.8sec means it is no slouch either. It is also a bit lighter than the 55 versions and is aimed at the crowd that will be using it strictly in the city. That said, the features and equipment list isn’t skimmed over. You still get the e-quattro system, 8 airbags, four-zone climate control, adaptive air suspension, virtual cockpit, and a lot more.
The e-tron 55, on the other hand, is all about that extra range. Priced at Rs 1.16 crore, it gets a larger 95kWh battery rated at 408bhp and 664Nm. The range is between 359-484km on a full charge, and that makes this the e-tron that you can drive out of the city. Performance is evidently better with a 0-100kph time of 5.7sec and a top speed of 200kph. What the e-tron 55 also gets is is a lengthy options list. You can add MATRIX LED headlamps, Bang and Olufson audio system, ambient lighting package, head-up display, soft-touch doors and even a bigger 22kW onboard charger.
However, if you want some extra bit of style along with all this performance, there is the e-tron Sportback 55. The internals remains the same as the standard e-tron 55, but you now have a sloping coupe-like roofline that is a lot more characterful. Also, it is priced at Rs 1.17 crore, which is a marginal bump for what is a more stylish alternative.
Looking at Audi’s approach towards the e-tron gives us a glimpse of their commitment to the EV game. Through 2021, customers will a receive complimentary wallbox charger in addition to the 11kW unit that comes with the car. Select Audi dealerships will also feature a 50kW DC fast charger that owners can use for free throughout the year. The target is to have 100 chargers across 75 cities in the coming months. Moreover, ownership has been made easier thanks to a standard warranty of 2 years with a battery warranty of 8 years and a best-in-class buyback upto 3 years and a complimentary RSA for up to 5 years. That is a lot, to be honest, and will surely entice buyers to skip over its main rivals: the Mercedes-Benz EQC and the Jaguar I-Pace. How it fares against them is something only a proper comparison test would tell.
Commenting on the launch, Mr. Balbir Singh Dhillon, Head of Audi India, said, “Today is a big day for us as we launch the e-tron brand in India. Under the e-tron brand – we are launching not one, but three electric SUVs that begin our electrification journey. The Audi e-tron 50, the Audi e-tron 55, and the Audi e-tron Sportback 55 are the perfect confluence of luxury, zero emissions, performance and everyday usability. With the three offerings, we have a proposition for every type of EV customer in the small but growing luxury SUV space. To ease the transition to electric mobility – we are offering several benefits and packages including after-sales, charging and ownership. To take it a step forward, we are also offering a best-in-class 3 year buyback. This is just the start of Audi India’s electric journey and you will hear from us very, very shortly on our next EV offering.”