Audi e-tron is the world’s bestselling premium electric vehicle made by a German manufacturer
Audi’s transformation into a leading provider of sustainable mobility charges up as it becomes the biggest maker of electric vehicles among Germany’s three luxury car brands. Since 2020, the fully electric Audi e-tron SUV has been the world’s bestselling premium electric vehicle made by a German manufacturer.
Focusing on sustainability as the new luxury, Audi is bringing in its new era of mobility to the Philippines through the scheduled introduction of the e-tron SUV in the latter half of the year.
Audi in the first quarter of 2021 delivered 462,828 vehicles worldwide, 31% more than the company’s 352,993-unit tally for the same three-month stretch of the previous year. Outpacing the growth rate of the total global auto market during the same period, Audi’s rise in deliveries is attributed to brisk demand for its high-end models and Q range of crossovers and SUVs.
Also powering up the brand’s growth this year is the popularity of the e-tron SUV. Deliveries of the flagship, completely electric-powered model rose 27% in the first quarter of the year. The spike in sales follows the e-tron SUV’s already electrifying performance for the whole of 2020, during which period deliveries surged 79.5%, representing 47,324 cars (counting in the e-tron Sportback variant) sold worldwide.
Since last year, the e-tron SUV has become Norway’s bestselling model—not only the bestselling electric vehicle, but the bestselling vehicle. It also currently makes up over 90% of Audi’s sales in Norway and in Iceland. In Germany, the e-tron SUV more than doubled its sales volume in the final quarter.
Last year, sales of the e-tron SUV in the US increased more than 50%. In early 2021 deliveries of the model hit a new quarterly record of 4,324 units sold (including 850 e-tron Sportback variants).
“The Audi e-tron is a real game changer for us and clearly illustrates our vision of sustainable and progressive premium mobility,” said Hildegard Wortmann, Member of the Board of Management for Sales and Marketing at Audi AG. “Our first fully electric SUV combines design, dynamic handling, and interior quality with the latest technology—for emissions-free driving without having to make compromises.”
The e-tron SUV, along with the rest of the fully electric e-tron lineup like the RS e-tron GT, e-tron GT and Q4 e-tron, forms Audi’s electromobility thrust. By 2025, the company plans to have more than 20 fully and 10 partially electric models accounting for 40% of its sales. It also aims to reduce by 30%, compared to 2015 levels, the carbon footprint of its vehicle fleet across the entire lifecycle. The company has also been accelerating its electrification roadmap and company-wide decarbonization as it intends to be carbon-neutral no later than 2050.
The e-tron offers the space, comfort and utility of a full-size SUV, providing ample room for five people and their luggage while at the same time exemplifying the driving experience of a new era. Two electric motors outputting 300 kW and 664 Nm drive the electric SUV, free of emissions and in near silence. The electric all-wheel drive quattro system guarantees superlative traction and handling on any terrain and in any weather condition by continuously distributing power between the two axles.
With a fully charged battery, the e-tron can cover more than 400 kilometers (according to WLTP standards), thanks partly to an innovative energy recuperation system. The electric SUV can recover energy when it is coasting and when the brake pedal is depressed.
Reflecting Audi’s design language as translated into a new electric-powered age, the e-tron is marked by sculpted surfaces, the brand-signature Singleframe grille (this time largely enclosed and in platinum gray), Matrix LED headlights, e-tron-specific daytime running lights, a sill area with black inserts visualizing the location of the battery, and a wide diffuser at the rear that highlights the absence of tailpipes. The SUV has no external side-view mirrors; these are replaced by cameras that project images on a high-definition screen placed on the interior door panels.
Charles E. Buban is an old timer in the Philippine automotive journalism scene. He first started covering the automotive beat in 2003, writing news and reviews of new models and car tech, among other car-related stuff. When not writing about cars, he could often be seen riding his mountain bike or doing long walks in the hope of catching a couple of legendary Pokemons.