Audi Australia says it’s closer than ever to bringing the all-electric Q4 e-tron and Q6 e-tron SUVs to market, thanks to increasing local customer demand and the latest Federal Government’s move towards stricter emissions laws.
While the Q4 e-tron – a sibling to the Cupra Born, Skoda Enyaq, and Volkswagen ID. range – and Q6 e-tron are still unconfirmed for Australia as it currently stands, local boss Jeff Mannering told CarExpert that the Australian division is having more promising discussions with the factory.
“If we had been sitting here two years ago and you asked this question, you probably would have heard ‘we really don’t know,” Mr Mannering told CarExpert at the launch of the new Q5 55 TFSI e plug-in hybrid.
“But if you just look at the market at the moment and the amount of EVs that have been consumed, it’s actually bringing the tipping point of balance into EVs quicker. As a company – Audi Australia – we’re on the map now.”
“Australia was never [seen as] a market ready for EVs, and now firstly the volume impacted [that perception], and then the change of government with Scott Morrison out and Anthony Albanese in.”
“It’s not just about electric cars, it’s a whole realm of sustainability topics, but transport emissions is one of the big topics worldwide. So it’s in our plans our plans now – discussions with the factory and being able to get the cars released for us has changed considerably over the last 12 months,” Mr Mannering continued.
“So, some of the news you would have heard from our brothers and sisters in the [VW Group Australia] office, we’re pretty much in line with that.”
While being coy on exact details, Mr Mannering’s latter statement indicates Audi is on track to bring at least one of the new electric products sometime in 2024, in line with parent Volkswagen and sibling subsidiary Skoda which both plan to bring in the likes of the ID.3, ID.4, ID.5 and Enyaq to Australia next year.
Our most recent reports have confirmation of a second quarter (Apr-Jun) launch for the VW ID.4 and ID.5 electric SUVs – including GTX performance variants – with the facelifted ID.3 hatchback range to lob in the second half of 2024, also including an as yet unrevealed GTX performance hero.
The Audi Q4 e-tron and Q4 Sportback e-tron ride on the same MEB dedicated electric architecture as the aforementioned Cupra Born, Skoda Enyaq, and Volkswagen ID. family.
They offer a range of single-motor RWD and dual-motor quattro AWD variants overseas, and currently only the larger 82kWh (gross) battery pack is available globally. Power outputs range from 150kW to 220kW depending on variant.
Audi’s smaller all-electric offering was first revealed in April 2021, meaning by the time it reaches Australia it will be almost halfway through the brand’s typical seven- to eight-year product lifecycle.
In terms of size and segmentation it’s an all-electric companion to the Audi Q3 in the same way the Volkswagen ID.4 is similar in size to the Tiguan.
As for the Q6 e-tron – which thus far has only been shown in camouflaged prototype form – Audi has confirmed its new EV will be available with both SUV and coupe-styled Sportback body variants, and it’ll be based on the new Premium Platform Electric (PPE) architecture co-developed with Porsche.
This new architecture will feature an 800V on-board electrical system, “powerful and efficient electric motors, an innovative battery and charging management system, and a newly developed electronics architecture”. Audi notes the Q6 e-tron represents “the next major step in the electrification and digitalisation” of the brand’s model range.
While details of the electric drivetrain are still to be revealed, the Macan EV will reportedly offer up to 450kW and 1000Nm in its most potent form, a drivetrain that will likely form the basis of a mooted RS Q6 e-tron performance hero.
The Q6 e-tron and Q6 Sportback e-tron will go into production before the end of the year, Audi’s global head office has confirmed.
Stay tuned to CarExpert for the latest, and let us know your thoughts in the comments!