Audi e-tron Sportback: the elite electric – journal de l'Automobile

Audi is offering its e-tron in a Coupé version which has some good surprises in store. If this variation adopts a qualitative interior and similar driving comfort, it offers improved autonomy. Sufficient to overcome apprehensions and justify a price beyond the reach of common motorists?

A little over a year ago, Audi launched its electric model line with the launch of its e-tron. Despite a call price set at 83,880 euros, the model has visibly won the hearts of European motorists, since it has established itself as the best-selling electric SUV in 2020. Around the world, there are nearly 18 000 units that have been delivered. In France, the brand with the rings sold 370 units of its electric SUV from January to July, a volume that may seem ridiculous, but which remains however much higher than those of two of its competitors, the Mercedes-Benz EQC and the Tesla Model. X, respectively sold at 148 and 214 units.

Building on its results and in accordance with an already proven strategy, the brand with the rings is now offering its SUV in a Coupé version. On board, nothing changes. The model still benefits from an impeccable level of finish and remarkable ergonomics, in particular thanks to the three screens, one of 12.3 '' as a digital dashboard, and two other touch screens for the multimedia system, air conditioning and driving aids settings. The trunk capacity suffers from styling, with 615 liters, or 45 liters less than the e-tron and 1,655 liters with the rear seats folded down, but the roominess remains royal, including for the three passengers in the rear.

Increased autonomy

Aesthetically, the one and most important difference from the e-tron Sportback is its receding roofline, giving it a sharper, less heavy style than the e-tron. But behind this entirely subjective assessment, however, hides an observation which is quite objective. It is this Coupé bodywork, but also, to a lesser extent, the mirrors exchanged for cameras (an option at 1,850 euros), which allow the SUV to have better aerodynamics, to the benefit, of course, of the sacro -saint autonomy. The Cx therefore reaches 0.25, improved by 0.03 compared to the classic body.

The catalog offers two versions of the SUV, the 50 quattro version developing 313 hp and 347 km of range in WLTP thanks to its 71 kWh battery, as well as the all-wheel drive version. Called 55 quattro, it has two electric motors placed on each axle for a total of 306 hp, and even, thanks to the boost function, 408 hp… for 8 seconds however. A little work on these batteries was also carried out by the teams of the German brand. For example, that of the quatro 55 version, with a gross capacity of 95 kWh, saw its useful capacity increase from 84.7 to 86.5 kWh. It is therefore mainly thanks to all these developments that the e-tron Sportback has a range in WLTP of 448 km, or 29 km more than the e-tron. 80% of this autonomy can be recovered from a 150 kW fast terminal of the Ionity network. In 50 kW, it takes 1h45, a time that reaches 9:30 am on an 11 kW socket.

23 kWh / 100 km

In fact, does this announced autonomy keep all its promises? We were able to put the best performing version, the 55 quattro, to the test on a course with various types of roads, including a few motorways, passages in towns, linked by departmental roads. The results concerning autonomy are final. With an average consumption recorded of around 23 kWh / 100 km, in the middle of the approved consumption displayed by the manufacturer (between 21.6 and 26.3 kWh), the e-tron Sportback can truly offer a little more 360 km of autonomy, without however paying particular attention to its behavior in eco-driving mode, but without seeking to reproduce sporty driving … which in any case is not the vocation of the e-tron Sportback.

The 306 hp is clearly not too much to move the 2.5 tons that the SUV displays on the scale. While dynamism is not on the program, comfort is certainly there. Yet stuck on its 21 "rims, the e-tron Sportback is perfectly cushioned on its driven suspensions. If its 700 kg batteries may at first glance seem like a big disadvantage, they however serve the stability of the vehicle, with a low center of gravity. Small downside: the effective three-stage braking energy recovery system initially makes braking dosage slightly difficult to understand. On the price side, Audi offers its e-tron Sportback from 96,700 euros for the S Line version, a price that can climb to 110,600 euros for the Avus Extended finish. The model thus escapes any bonus but also common motorists.

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