Audi e-tron (2019) Review

Audi e-tron (2019) At A Glance

4/5
Honest John Overall Rating
The Audi e-tron is a very good choice for those looking for a big dose of luxury in their electric SUV, and is well worthy of your consideration.

+Wonderfully classy inside, roomier than most (not all) rivals, very civilised on the road with an 248 mile range.

-A Jaguar I-Pace is better to drive, a Tesla Model X is more practical, touchscreen system could be better.

Insurance Group 42

Every all-electric premium SUV that the Audi e-tron competes with plays its own different role, whether it’s the practical one (Tesla Model X), the sporty one (Jaguar I-Pace) or the techy one (Mercedes EQC). The Audi’s role is that of the luxury car, thanks to a comfy ride, impeccable refinement and flawless interior quality, and it’s a role the car plays incredibly well. The e-tron is a very classy and desirable car, and one that’s very easy to recommend.

Never one to shy away from filling an untapped niche within its model line-up, it didn't take Audi long to jump on the electric SUV bandwagon. First came the Tesla Model X, then came the Jaguar I-Pace, while the Audi and it’s other main rival - the Mercedes-Benz EQC - arrived at pretty much the same time. Prestige SUV EVs might be a relatively new thing, but that’s one heck of a talented field from the off.

Each offering brings something slightly different to the party, but the e-tron’s trump card is undoubtedly the luxury it delivers, and it delivers it in a variety of ways. The first of them is Audi’s trademark quality.

The cabin is nothing short of a sensory delight, with beautiful, thoughtfully finished materials and a standard of assembly that feels like it could withstand a nuclear blast.

Yes, the Audi’s various touchscreens could be easier to use, especially while you’re on the move, but there’s no denying the high-tech feel and the drama they add to the interior, on top of all that quality. The cabin also has lots of space and bags of creature comforts, making it feel even more like a luxury limousine on stilts.

Also reminiscent of a luxury limousine is the refinement that the e-tron displays. Electric motors are much quieter than combustion engines, and that’s a very good start, but the job is finished incredibly well by seriously impressive suppression of wind- and road noise. At a steady motorway cruise, there’s not much more than the scenery rushing past your windows to let you know that you’re moving at all.

The e-tron is good to drive in other areas, too. The more powerful 55 version we’ve tried has more than enough pace for most drivers, while the standard air suspension provides a really good balance of comfort and control. 

Granted, you’ll pay a lot to buy one, but the same applies to all its rivals and you’ll enjoy low day-to-day running costs. The e-tron can’t match its best rivals for driving range, either, but unless you regularly drive more than 150 miles in a day (which not many of us do) then it’s unlikely that these small differences are going to make any significant difference.

Ask Honest John

What's the best small, electric 4x4?
"I'm planning to use our 2008 Mini Cooper Clubman for a deposit on an electric 4x4, some kind of lease deal. The question is, what 4x4 do we need? We share our time between London and rural Suffolk, and the lanes have been particularly muddy and icy of late. It would also need to transport two cocker spaniels and have enough room in the back for baby seats as we have grandchildren (dogs and children not necessarily at the same time as we have access to other cars). So, as small as possible, decent off-road ability and ground clearance, funky, and able to travel between London and Suffolk easily in terms of range. Thanks."
The Jaguar I-Pace might do the job. It has an official range of up to 292 miles and is a fairly practical choice, but it's not cheap. Also consider the Audi e-tron or Mercedes EQC. Alternatively, if you're happy to compromise on the 4x4 requirement, consider the Peugeot e-2008 or Kia e-Niro. Both are very versatile small electric crossovers.
Answered by Andrew Brady
Are there any electric vehicles that can safely tow a 1500kg caravan?
"Are there any electric vehicles which can safely tow a caravan of 1500kg? I currently have a Hyundai Santa Fe 2.2 diesel which is a superb tow car - can anything electric replace it at a similar cost?"
Not at a similar cost. The only EVs that can currently tow are expensive SUVs like the Audi e-tron and Mercedes-Benz EQC. You'd be better considering a plug-in hybrid like a Volkswagen Passat GTE (which can officially tow up to 1600kg).
Answered by Andrew Brady
Can electric vehicles tow a trailer?
"Are electric cars able to tow caravans and trailers?"
There are a few electric cars that are able to tow. These include the Polestar 2 (towing capacity 1500kg), Audi e-tron (1800kg) and Tesla Model X (2250kg). EVs have a number of advantages when it comes to towing: they're usually quite heavy (a good thing when towing) and provide instant torque. They also have good brakes with regenerative braking helping to slow down, which will help keep a trailer or caravan under control.
Answered by Andrew Brady
What electric vehicles can tow a 1450kg caravan?
"We are being pressurised into going electric, despite the manufacturing sites not being 'green' for the foreseeable future. Being a caravaner and also towing other trailers from time to time, what electric vehicles will tow a 1450kg caravan? Also what range could I expect?"
There are a few electric cars that'll be able to tow your caravan. These include the Polestar 2 (towing capacity 1500kg), Audi e-tron (1800kg) and Tesla Model X (2250kg). EVs have a number of advantages when it comes to towing: they're usually quite heavy (a good thing when towing) and provide instant torque. They also have good brakes with regenerative braking helping to slow down, which will help keep a trailer or caravan under control. We don't have any data on what range you can expect when towing but, obviously, it'll be considerably less than the standard WLTP range figure. Bear in mind that technology has moved on rapidly over the last 10 years and will continue to do so over the coming years - by 2030, there'll be a much wider range of EVs capable of towing. New plug-in hybrid vehicles will be on sale until 2035 and these are well-suited to towing.
Answered by Andrew Brady

What does a Audi e-tron (2019) cost?

Buy new from £50,495 (list price from £60,600)