GIMS 2018: Audi Showcases E-Tron Prototype

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At the 2018 Geneva Motor Show, Audi has on display a new all-electric SUV dubbed the E-Tron prototype. The luxury five-seater will go on sale in Europe by late 2018. 

Audi is poised to join the electric race later this year, spearheaded by a new prototype displayed at the German automaker’s pavilion. The E-Tron prototype is a four-door midsize crossover capable of seating five adults in sumptuous luxury. The company hinted at a range of close to 400 km. An advanced 150 kW fast-charging system sees the car juice up its batteries up to 80 percent in just 30 minutes of charging.

Although Audi shied away from revealing any more specs of the E-Tron prototype, we can still make a calculated speculation. Back in 2015 at the IAA Frankfurt Motor Show, Audi had unveiled the E-Tron Quattro concept to preview its upcoming range of electric vehicles. The E-Tron Quattro had three electric motors as a means of propulsion, with one moving the front axle, and the other two at the rear. The three motors produced a combined 436 hp, with an energy boost mode pushing the output to its 496 hp peak momentarily. The battery of the concept was a 95 kW-h lithium-ion unit.

Fast forward to 2018, and Audi’s R&D department has finally come out with a new electric car that is ready to hit the road. It looks good, has a well-appointed interior and an intuitive infotainment unit, and doesn’t burn fossil fuels. The E-Tron prototype will go on sale later this year in Europe, followed by the United States in 2019. Audi is also hard at work morphing the SUV into a more coupe-like crossover that will follow the launch of the E-Tron. Both vehicles will be produced at the company’s facility in Brussels, Belgium.

The E-Tron prototype will take the fight to established rivals in the business like the Tesla Model X, and also go up against new arrivals like the Jaguar I-Pace and Mercedes-Benz EQC.