Audi Q8 e-tron: a new name on the cards as part of the 2022 facelift for the e-tron

The Audi e-tron, the first fully electric car produced by Audi, is set for a mid-life update by the end of 2022. Now, German media reports suggest that the range-topping SUV will be renamed the Q8 e-tron at the same time. To bring its naming in line with the rest of the brand’s expanding electrical range.

The naming modification could also help differentiate the car from other ‘e-tron’ models that have been introduced since the luxury SUV’s arrival in 2018, as well as other models on the road, such as the Q6 e-tron. The Q8 e-tron was previously rumored to be the successor to the current model, due in 2026, but it now appears to have been introduced.

Official details remain poor on the ground as to what we can expect from the updated e-tron and e-tron Sportback, however, member of the Audi Technical Development Board, Oliver Hoffmann, revealed to DrivingElectric in 2021 that the BMW iX competitor will receive important updates to the electronics And the battery as part of the update.

He said, “The e-tron is really a special car for Audi, because it really pioneered electric mobility for us. So it’s important to keep the car fresh, and therefore we develop a major update in terms of range and charging time.”

Hoffman declined to discuss specific numbers, but we expect that a more energy-dense battery could push the maximum capacity above 100 kWh. This, along with increased efficiency from the electric motors, could mean a higher range number than the e-tron’s current maximum of 254 miles. And a comfortable range of more than 300 miles will make Audi competitive against the likes of the latest Tesla Model X and BMW iX.

The upgraded e-tron isn’t likely to have the same 350kW of superfast charging capacity as the upcoming Q6 e-tron, as it requires an 800-volt electrical system that’s not part of the e-tron’s mechanical platform. But we expect to increase the speed of 155 kW that the current version can reach.

An early version of the revised e-tron was spotted for testing on public roads twice – once in Germany and once in winter in Sweden. The design changes are not expected to be drastic, but they will apply to both the standard e-tron SUV and the more elegant Sportback Coupe. A new treatment for the headlight and front grille is expected to give the e-tron look in line with the newer Q4 e-tron model. There will likely be updates inside as well, with two separate screens for the current model expected to be integrated into a large touchscreen interface that extends across the dashboard.

The updated e-tron will continue to sit on a version of VW Group’s mechanical MLB platform, which is shared with combustion-engine models such as the Audi Q7 and Q8. The transition to a platform dedicated to electric vehicles is expected to occur when the second generation version arrives in 2026.

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