Revealed: Audi shows off cut-price e-tron EV, but don't hold your breath
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It might not look particularly different or particularly flash, but this might be the most important model that Audi releases this year.
It's an e-tron, but perhaps not as we know it. This is the e-tron 50 Quattro; a new foundation model for the German company's electric SUV line-up.
It swaps out the standard 95kWh battery pack and replaces it with a smaller 71kWh. This naturally means a few losses over its standard-spec cousin, like less power (230kW/540Nm to the standard 300kW/665Nm), a slower 0–100km/h time (seven seconds), and obviously less range.
On this last point, the e-tron 50 Quattro claims a still commendable 300km according to to WLTP numbers, compares to the 55 Quattro's 399km.
It still comes fitted with dual motors, and it still comes with a well-appointed cabin. The latter includes Audi's signature digital cockpit, dual central screens for infotainment and air-conditioning controls, numerous radar sensors, and more.
So, why is this model potentially the most important in the line-up?
Well, it could prove to be Audi's volume seller in Europe. While top-spec models are all the range in places like New Zealand where premium brands attract a premium market, in Europe a cheaper e-tron might be the ticket to increasing the percentage of EVs that make it out of showrooms.
But, don't expect to see it in New Zealand's line-up (at least, not yet). Audi NZ have not confirmed the model for this market, and that's to be expected given that the models that make up our domestic range are primarily mid– and high–spec models.
Currently, local pricing on the e-tron starts at $148,500, with the Advanced grade model starting at $157,000.
To read Driven's full first impressions behind the wheel of the e-tron, check out tomorrow's edition in the Weekend Herald