Audi Q4 e-tron fully electric SUV first drive

Audi Q4 e-tron fully electric SUV

The latest Audi Q4 e-tron is proof that you can get more than you expect, even in today’s cut-throat and complex car market.

When originally launched in March 2021 it was the fourth fully electric model in the brand’s e-tron series. But it’s undergone continuous improvement and towards the end of 2023 it was boosted with a bigger battery and significant suspension and equipment changes to enhance driver appeal and practicality.

It’s worked very well.

Built on the Volkswagen Group’s MEB platform which permits adaptation to a variety of body shapes, sizes and powertrains, the Q4 e-tron is a mid-size SUV with good room for occupants and their luggage.

The £58,090 test car was fitted with £2,545 of options comprising geyser blue paint, functions and technology packs including had a Sonos premium sound system, inductive 9ZV phone link, rear 12v socket and 2 USB-C ports, with

high performance multi-facet LEDs both ends.

There is a good range in the series priced from £51,270 to £63,950 depending on being rear or all-wheel drive and Sport, S line and Black Edition trim levels throughout.

You can add pack features to build a model you want in SUV or coupe SUV bodystyles with the latter looking sleeker but giving marginally less room.

The seats were very roomy, highly adjustable and very comfortable with a lot of room infront or behind and offset split backrest quickly dropped to significantly increase the total luggage space.

Access to the loadbed was good with a very low lip, wide and high opening tailgate and a sensibly shaped compartment with some underfloor storage as well as restraint hooks for netting and secure location of loads.

Inside, the doors opened wide to reveal a spacious cabin, even in the back, and the driver has a good range of column adjustment to the steering to tailor any desired position.

Everything sweeps around the driver with a digital instruments and features display directly infront giving essential information in selectable formats and supported by an equally big but more central infotainment hub. This covered the navigation, communications and vehicle settings.

It is a lot to take in and proved fiddly to use on the move while the compact touch switches on the wheelspokes were on the small side and sometimes could be miss-used as a result.

It accelerated very strongly even in economy mode and was particularly sharply away in sport, had very good mid-range punch and really effortlessly cruised at the legal motorway limit, but was so involving and enjoyable on A and B-class roads as well.

Handling was responsive and faithful with excellent grip despite being only rear wheel drive, helped by a compact turning circle when parking, very strong brakes and a generally smooth ride over all but the worst surfaces.

The driving controls were so easy; start, select drive or reverse and off you go. Five different modes could be utilised to maximise economy or performance, and individual steering and suspension settings as well as the amount of retardation desired.

This proved very interesting in use because we frequently started a journey with an indicated mileage range for charging but thanks to the intelligent software in the Q4 e-tron we would do noticeably better and have a few more miles left than we started with. A car that gives you back something, now that is rare, desirable and unexpected.


Model: Audi Q4 45 e-tron black edition RWD all-electric SUV

Price: £58,090

Mechanical: 210kW (286ps) motor, 77kWh battery, auto

Max Speed: 112mph

0-62mph: 6.7secs

Range: 280 miles

Insurance Group: 37

CO2 emissions: Zero

Bik rating: 2%, VED £Zero FY, £590×5 SR x 5-years

Warranty:  3yrs/ 60K with 8yrs/ 100K battery

Size: L4.59m, W1.87m, H1.64m

Bootspace: 520 to 1490 litres

Kerbweight: 2145kg

For: Extremely refined and sophisticated powertrain, very good performance, excellent quality finish, comfortable seats, good handling, roomy, desirable brand.

Against: Some road noises, stiff suspension on bad surfaces, fiddly secondary controls, pricey for some would-be customers. By Robin Roberts Miles Better News Agency

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