We can only expect this paradigm shift to continue. This is audis original, ev proponent, its called the e tron suv and its been on sale in australia since late 2020.. Now the german car maker has since broadened its portfolio its got the e tron s, and it will soon have the e tron ev among a swag of other new variants, but weve had this particular car in the car sales garage for the past couple of months. Let me show you what its all about Music. The e tron is one of several european electric suvs now available in australia joining the likes of the jaguar. I pace tesla model x and growing ev portfolios from bmw and mercedes benz, squeezing between the combustion engine audi q5 and audi q7 in size. The e tron range starts at 1′ 000. and is available in two different shapes and with two different power. Tunes here were testing the penultimate e tron 55 in a conventional wagon shape. Now, as most current ev owners can attest, an electric vehicle is only really as good as the charging infrastructure around you. So when i went into this long term e tron loan, i did so without any at home infrastructure, ive purely relied on public infrastructure to get by now. The limitations that that kind of imposed on me became evident pretty quickly. This car has a claimed range of about 450 kilometers, but a real world range of about 340k, so once a week, sometimes twice a week.

Ive come down here and made use of this public infrastructure, its not everyones cup of tea, because, as weve found, it takes a lot of time to charge an electric car driven by two electric motors, one on each axle. The all wheel, drive e tron. 55 develops 300 kilowatts and 664 newton meters in total feeding energy from a mammoth 95 kilowatt hour battery, but getting back to charging officially a kilowatt dc fast charger is claimed to replenish the battery in 45 minutes. We found this 50 kilowatt. Nrma system is closer to two hours again giving you about a 340 kilometer range. The e trons purchase price does include installation of an 11 kilowatt ac home charger, which goes a long way in sweetening the deal. It means you could hypothetically recharge your car from the garage overnight, but were leaping into this ev ownership experiment totally reliant on public infrastructure. So one thing i will say there is a real ev movement happening in australia. People that own their electric cars are very aware that theyre kind of foregoing a little bit of free time, a little bit of effort for the good of the environment, and they are super passionate about it. The sweetener for the e tron is that it is a really nice place inside the cabin. Firstly, in terms of strictly charging, you have a sort of forecasted time that youre expected to finish charging, irrespective of what youre, using if its 150 kilowatt, fast charger or a 50 kilowatt fast charger like were on at the moment.

So its got my total range, as well as the projected time that im likely to finish so thats really good for planning. Otherwise it is a really costing really teutonic space and really quite tech laden as well. So if you are sitting in this car waiting for it to recharge youre, going to be doing so with comfort, theres, two haptic screens in the middle one controls your basic infotainment, your media, everything else and the bottom infra interface controls all of the climate control. So theres very minimal physical buttons inside the cabin theyre, matched by audis virtual instrument display virtual cockpit as they like to call it its been around for years and its still one of the best systems around the e tron covers all of our key infotainment requisites as Standard likewise, the e tron safety suite is excellent, covering all our bases with well tuned and sophisticated technology. Okay. So that brings us to arguably the elephant in the room. The most eye catching feature of this particular h1s. It has the optional 3400 virtual exterior mirror so theres a camera on each side. It looks like your external mirror. Housing is actually broken, its not and it kind of shoots back a picture. You can actually move it up and down. If you need to it works. Quite well, it takes a lot of adjustment. You just got to learn to trust the system. I often find myself looking over my shoulder, probably norm more than i normally would with traditional mirrors, but in terms of reversing thats, probably the biggest thing.

I never realized how much i actually sort of shifted up and down in my seat to be able to see what the wheels are doing. You obviously cant do that with a camera based system, the e trons 4.9 meter dimensions translate to strong second row proportions suitable for adults or little ones alike. There are air vents in the b pillars and behind the center console, together with a flip down armrest two additional usb ports to match the two in the front row plus isofix attachment points on the outbound pews. So one of the things thats really won me over with the audi e tron is its physical size, 4.9 meters in length, as i said before, its sort of neatly wedged between q5 and q7. That means theres enough space in the boot area, in the rear seat. To kind of work as an everyday family car, but its not too big that its at that sort of intimidating size, so the boot area itself flat floor bit of a high loading height, but 616 litres altogether. Theres, a 12 volt outlet here as well as these handy levers to stow the second row space down when you do that, youre getting well over 300 litres worth of boot space theres, a space saver spare tyre underneath the boot area, as well as a handy storage Space for things like picnic, rugs, okay, Music, okay, so this might be a very simple place to start a electric car driving review.

But there is a lot to be said about the quietness and almost like the tranquility of an ev cabin upon taking off its more pronounced too ive spent several months with this car. Every time i jump back and forth between this and an internal combustion car. They kind of feel comparatively chaotic and busy inside the cabin with all the vibration, noise and anything else, but pull away from the curbside. The e tron picks up speed effortlessly nor to 100 in 5.7 seconds in this 55 quattro. But more than that its, i guess the the middling accelerations youre going to be sitting at 75 ks now like i am at the moment, you can just squeeze on the accelerator and its just a almost boundless surge to as fast as you want to go. The e trons limited range and the fact it cannot emulate the visceral rush of an induction engine through the rev cycle means there is very little temptation to explore its straight line performance. Rather, there is more day to day enjoyment from the drivetrains ease of use. In all scenarios and its absolute sereness now dynamics, there is no shortage of new ev models on the on the market that i would call under suspended theyre prone to crashing theyre prone to a lot of vertical movement, and, just generally, they dont have the adequate suspension System to really make do with all the weight on board this e tron suv weighs about 2.

6 tonnes and it does an amazing job at just controlling itself, over big, drawn out undulations and over sharp obstacles alike. So, for that reason, like i just went through a huge washout then and just bang, it recovered so quickly and it never really got to the bottom of its stroke. It just sort of hovered through it in one easy motion. For that reason, youre not really getting any thudding any crashing or anything else and be that on inner city, roads with lots of road joints, lots of bumps to country roads like im on at the moment. This surface is quite busy, its quite undulating and its on a pop mark, bitumen, and even so, the e tron suv acquits itself really nicely dynamically theres, a very digital veneer to all the controls and theres nothing wrong with it. It telegraphs all its key movements really well, but i think that the real saving grace with this car, the real defining feature with it, is that it just balances dynamic, wares with comfort really well. The all drive system is key for that. I think you know it its inherently rear, biased, youll call on the front axle if theres a slippage detected or, if youre really hooking in. But it means the car feels balanced, feels really good under power, and it feels just short footed as well. The electronics theyre probably a little bit overzealous if you, if youre, really going to hook into a corner.

You know the stability control suites there, because it will take big chunks away of power if it needs to, but all in all as a daily driver. This is a really nice place to be and, as i said, you get really used to the ev component, because its so quiet and so serene that everything else feels a little bit busy in terms of range. So, as i said before, 340 ks range in reality. I found that consistently every time i charge it, the trick with it is its not as predictive in its readout as it probably could be ill. Give you an example. Yesterday i went from our place in the mountains down to the coast, see about 600 meters elevation down to zero. When i started the trip i had 186 kilometers worth of range displayed when i finished it at the other end, i still had 186 ks worth of range display. Then it was time to come home. I went from 186 down to 43 kilometers because the trip was uphill, so i dont know there has to be a smarter way of of giving you a readout, so youre not sort of caught out ever. If you werent really used to this car caught out with no range, even though you started the journey with plenty thats, probably my only criticism. This car has three stage regen brakes. They work really well, and my favorite feature is that theyre accessed through traditional paddle shifters.

So, instead of changing the gearbox, you can go from the easiest coasting setting, which is almost like hovering along in neutral, like an angel gear to pulling on the paddles, and it really washes off speed quite aggressively, but its not in a way like tesla, like others, That comes on so suddenly it makes you feel car sick, its still done in a nice, linear and progressive fashion, thats the real trick with the each one suv i think. Unlike a lot of other ev offerings it, it really just floats along really seamlessly. You know from an ownership perspective, its a car that youre going to enjoy driving owners will likewise appreciate the after sales provisions of the e tron suv six years. Complementary, servicing a six year complementary charge, fox public charging subscription and a guaranteed future value, all included. It adds plenty of incentive to the e tron a vehicle already offering excellent on road wears a bristling interior and first rate safety and technology living with the audi e tron has taken me into uncharted ev territory, its probably the first one that ive spent a lot Of time with, and its really convinced me that i could really do the ev thing long term, so much so im now thinking about installing solar panels and charging infrastructure at my own place, but that itself is the trick with an ev. You obviously need all of that set up in your own household to really make it work.