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2018 Geneva Motor Show: Audi E-Tron prototypes hit town

By David Bonnici, 07 Mar 2018 Events

2018 Geneva Motor Show Audi E-Tron prototypes hit town

Audi did away with the black sheet unveil, instead choosing to send a bunch of its EV SUV prototypes through Geneva’s streets

WHILE EV-philes were still fawning over the newly released Jaguar I-Pace, rival luxury brand Audi showed its all-electric SUV hand at the Geneva motor show in less-than conventional circumstances.

Instead of a traditional reveal to industry suits within the PalExpo building’s halls, the German carmaker sent a bunch of garishly camouflaged Audi E-tron test vehicles to wow the public on Geneva’s des rues. 

Audi says it already has 250 Q6-based E-Tron prototypes taking part in a five million-kilometre testing program across Europe, Africa, Asia and North America ahead of the production car’s August debut in Brussels, where it will be produced.

They’re powered by three electric motors, (two on the rear axle and one at the front) that combine to produce 320kW, and drive a special electronic quattro all-wheel-drive system.

Performance is yet to be confirmed, but a 0-100km time of 4.6 seconds was mentioned when the E-tron was first announced back in 2015. That’s enough to show the back wheels to any of Audi’s conventionally powered S-badged SUVs, as well as the I-Pace and Tesla Model X. 

Audi says the E-tron will travel about 450km between charges, which will take as little as 30 minutes with a fast charger.  

It’s expected to go on sale in Europe as early as late 2018 and should arrive in Australia in the middle part of 2019.

The E-tron SUV will be the first of three all-electric Audi models rolling out by 2020, including the four-door Gran Turismo based on the E-tron Sportback concept, and a compact model.