2017 Audi Q6 E-tron

2017 audi q6 e-tron – DOC621103

Audi has been hard at work fleshing out its crossover lineup, and who can blame it, considering how hot that segment is right now. We already know that the 2016 Audi Q1 is on the way, the 2016 Q7 has just received a full makeover, and a sub-Q1 Junior crossover is rumored to be on the way. Now, according to an image that Audi released and a report from Audi is set to launch a Tesla Model X-fighting Q6 e-tron in the coming years.

This report comes from a press conference held by Audi’s research and development boss, Ulrich Hackenberg, who outlined the basic details surrounding the upcoming electric crossover. Unfortunately, Hackenberg didn’t dive too deep into the new model, but he did give us enough information to do a little speculating with.

So do I think that the Q6 e-tron will be able to hang with the now-delayed Model X?

Updated 08/13/2015: In a recent press release, Audi announced it will develop the battery for its future electric SUV on the basis of powerful cell modules from the South Korean suppliers LG Chem and Samsung SDI. This new technology will ensure a driving range of more than 500 kilometers (310 miles).

Exterior

According to Ulrich Hackenberg, Audi’s research and development boss, the upcoming Q6 will draw its inspiration from the 2014 Prologue Concept that it showed off at the 2014 LA Auto Show. Also noted was the fact that this SUV will be sportier than the Q7, and will feature a coupe-link appearance.

Though the teaser image that Audi released doesn’t show too much, the cues that I expect the Q6 to adopt from the Prologue concept include the swooping roofline, the angular headlights, the more hard-angled grille and the deeply sculpted doors. Also look for it to carry taillights that are similar to those on the concept.

Interior

The cabin remains a mystery, but given this is a crossover coupe, look for it to have a 2+2 seating arrangement and limited headroom in the rear. Look for the cabin to come standard with high-end leather upholstery, but Audi will also offer even more premium materials for a cost.

With this being an EV, look for it to carry all of the latest and greatest gadgetry. Look for an advanced infotainment system, a touchscreen that monitors the battery system, and an entire suite of safety devices.

Drivetrain

The driving force behind the Q6 is a set of four electric motors – one at each wheel – much like the R8 e-tron. The amount of power this system will have remains unknown, but it’ll likely be a good bit less than the 2016 R8 e-tron’s 455 horsepower. Maybe somewhere in the range of 375 horsepower would be good for this class. That said, the final output will probably be influenced by what Tesla decides to do with the Model X.

Fueling the four electric motors will be a 100 kWh battery – 10 kWh higher than the R8 e-tron. Despite having a higher-rated batter than the R8 e-tron, the Q6 will likely have a range of under 200 miles, while the R8 will enjoy a 280-mile range. This is mostly due to the higher curb weight and increased aerodynamic drag.

Prices

Pricing is still unknown, but expect the Q6 to remain competitive with the Tesla Model X.

Competition

Tesla Model X

Tesla Model X Concept

Though the Model X has been put on hold a number of times, Tesla swears that it is still on the way. Under the skin of this sleek coupe-style SUV will likely be the two drivetrains from the model S, including the 65 kWh and the 85 kWh. The question will remain whether these will have the same output as their respective D versions of the Model S, or if they will be detuned slightly.

In terms of luxury, the Audi certainly wins out, as the Model S is not a car that I can honestly put in the same class of luxury as BMW , Mercedes or Audi. It has some premium materials, but it doesn’t match up to the big-boys of the luxury realm. I expect this to carry over into the Model X.

Gallery Tesla Model X

Conclusion

Looks like Audi is hitting two crossover hot-buttons with one shot with the Q6. Not only will it be a crossover coupe, but it will also have an electric drivetrain. One thing that concerns me though is the anticipated range. I am not too sure if a sub-200-mile range is good enough for consumers. Hopefully, by the time the Q6 e-tron rolls out, EV efficiency will have advanced so that this crossover can hit at least 250 miles.

LOVE IT

  • Should be pretty good looking
  • Likely quite powerful
  • The typical Audi cabin should blow away the Model X

LEAVE IT

  • Cramped back seats in crossover soups
  • May not have the range that buyers need
  • May struggle to keep its price competitive with the Model X

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