Audi will begin assembly of the production version of the E-Tron Quattro concept crossover in Brussels, Belgium, in 2018, and the company will also build the vehicle’s batteries there. Introducing its first electric CUV will be an early step in the German automaker’s goal for 20 to 25 percent of US deliveries to be EVs by 2025.
The E-Tron Quattro concept previewed the electric crossover’s angular styling at the 2015 Frankfurt Show, and Audi was clear that production would start in early 2018. The vehicle should have ample get-up from three electric motors – one in front and two at the back – for a total output of 429 horsepower but brief jolts up to 496 hp. Audi also claimed that the 95-kWh battery could offer over 311 miles of range on the European cycle. The company already signed a deal to use battery cells from LG Chem and Samsung SDI on the final model.
Some rumors suggest Audi might call the production version the Q6. The company supports that possibility in its press release by saying: “The sporty SUV will fit between the Audi Q7 and the Audi Q5 in the product portfolio.” However, Audi of America president Scott Keogh hinted to Autoblog before the LA Auto Show that it could carry a different name.
Audi’s development of the E-Tron Quattro is an example of Volkswagen Group’s strategy to take EVs more seriously. For example, improved batteries will soon boost the e-Golf’s range. Further in the future, Porsche will launch a production version of its Mission E electric sedan around 2020, and VW will reportedly make an electric Phaeton at some point next decade.