An electric moment
Audi is the UK’s third-biggest-selling car brand, releasing its second-best-selling model, as an all-electric, with a range up to 317 miles. This is a big moment for the brand, and it could help the British public in the next step to EV adoption.
The Q4 e-tron has three powertrain options, which use the same nomenclature style as the brand’s petrol and diesel models: the 35 e-tron, 40 e-tron and 50 e-tron.
The Audi Q4 35 e-tron entry-level model combines a 168bhp electric motor with a 52kWh battery, which produces a respectable 208 miles of electric range.
For those who want the most range, the Audi Q4 40 e-tron offers a very impressive range of up to 317 miles, by combining a 77kWh battery, with an electric motor that produces 201bhp that can muster 0-60mph in 8.3 seconds.
While the Audi Q4 50 e-tron is claimed to have a range of up to 295 miles, while offering extra power through a twin electric motor setup that also enables all-wheel-drive, which combines to produce 295bhp and 0-60mph in a suitably nippy six seconds.
While charging speeds of up to 125kW mean that the Audi Q4 e-tron can be charged from 5% to 80% in under 40 minutes, which means that top-ups to add a 100 miles of charge can easily fit into a quick break at motorway services.
In terms of ride and handling, the Audi Q4 e-tron moves away in a silent and stealthy fashion, with this motor feeling pleasingly powerful. Well-weighted steering and well-controlled body roll also allows for a thoroughly involving driving experience – more so than some of Audi’s other competitor models.
By putting the Audi Q4 e-tron into “B” mode it unlocks more extreme regenerative braking, which allows you to use a single pedal to both accelerate and brake for the majority of the time, however it can’t quite bring the car to a complete stop like some other electric car systems can.
The ride is largely comfortable, though at lower speeds it can be a bit unsettled. Perhaps not helped by our model’s 20-inch alloy wheels (19s are standard).
The first thing you’ll notice in the Audi Q4 e-tron is the steering wheel. That’s because this electric Audi has an almost square wheel. It looks cool, and it’s great to drive with, however we’re not such a fan of some of the gloss black buttons on it, though they lend themselves to useful functionality of course.
The interior is reassuringly high-quality, with easy-to-use media systems and display. And at the same time, the Audi Q4 e-tron is also very practical, with a 520-litre boot (or 1,490 litres with the rear seats folded). However, you do get slightly more space in the Skoda Enyaq, if boot space is one of your most important needs.
When it comes to trim levels there are four to choose from: Sport, S line, Edition 1 and Vorsrpung.
Standard equipment in the Sport is generous, including 19-inch alloy wheels, LED headlights, a 10.1-inch touchscreen and three-zone climate control, with the S line upgrading to larger 20-inch wheels, along with sports styling, sports seats, as well as ambient interior lighting.
High-spec Edition 1 cars get Matrix LED headlights, a black styling kit, and electric front seats, while the flagship Vorsprung trim adds 21-inch alloy wheels, a superb Sonos sound system, head-up display, and a panoramic sunroof. All of which is rather nice.
A modestly premium price
Perhaps unsurprisingly the Q4 is pricier than its Skoda Enyaq and Volkswagen ID.4 relatives, both of which qualify for the government grant in the lowest specs, while the Audi misses out on this due to its list price that’s above £35k.
The Audi Q4 e-tron starts from £41,325, and can rise to almost £60,000 in the model’s finest trims. We would certainly recommend either a Sport or S line car if you can, as both represent the best value for money.
Absolutely worth a try
The Q4 is a highly accomplished electric car that will easily be adopted by customers who want an Audi, and an EV. This feels like a turning point for German maestros, as it’s a big step in making an EV be, and feel, much more accessible. With an impressive range, interior and a good driving experience, it certainly ticks all of the right boxes.
The only real challenge against it, is the extra price, over its mechanically-similar siblings (or cousins, depending on how you look at it) from Skoda and Volkswagen. However, if you like the premium edge that Audi offers in style and feel, and have the budget to stretch to this splendid SUV, then we’re sure you won’t be disappointed.
Or the Audi Q4 e-tron Sportback…
If the Audi Q4 e-tron appeals, then you can also explore and compare it against the Sportback, to see which is right for you. The Audi Q4 e-tron Sportback offers an electric range of up to 323 miles, and fast charging in 38 minutes, with 535 litres of luggage space, and lots of similar spec options to get excited about. You can find out more here.