Audi A3 e-tron Launch In U.S. Is Vitally Important For Automaker’s Electric Future

NOV 8 2015 BY MARK KANE 31

audi a3 sportback e-tron cutaway 2

Audi A3 e-tron

A recent Automotive News’ article on Audi’s electric future reveals some interesting details.

First of all is that the A3 e-tron plug-in hybrid will be available throughout nearly the whole U.S. dealer network (roughly 280 dealerships), with a goal of approximately 5,000 sales annually.

All of those dealers who signed up for the A3 e-tron will install at least 4 charging points, as the first step to be ready for more electric models.

The A3 e-tron is priced fairly aggressively in the United States from $37,900.  The Audi is also eligible for $4,158 from the federal government in plug-in credits because of its 8.8 kWh battery.   While not yet rated by the EPA, we expect a result of about ~22 miles of real world range.

In 2016, there will be another plug-in hybrid, the Audi – Q7 e-tron.  In 2018, Audi plans to begin sales of the all-electric Q6 e-tron, which will be followed by one more mystery Audi BEV.

The arrival of the Audi A3 e-tron triggers local dealer training, and a study on purchase behaviors (whether consumers like the optional EVSE rooftop solar panels installed by SunPower).

So, Audi is moving forward and we should now expect at least 5,000+ plug-in sales in the US for the first full year of sales in 2016.  The A3 e-tron first deliveries are happening right now in America.

Editor’s Note/Update (November 8th, 2015 – 2:50P):  Upon request we added some details on the Audi A3 e-tron’s specs/US pricing to the article

Source: Automotive News

Categories: Audi

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31 Comments on "Audi A3 e-tron Launch In U.S. Is Vitally Important For Automaker’s Electric Future"

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They are assuming half the sales of its “natural rival”, the i3. Seems like they are thinking the i3 concept is better, or at least more popular, since the i3 is a bit more expensive?
Fun fact: in Germany the i3 is as expensive as the eGolf and cheaper than the A3 etron/ Golf GTE.

“Vitally important”?

Perhaps, since their future in diesel is cloudy and full of soot….



$38K with 22 miles All Electric Range is lack luster. Where are the QuantumScape batteries?

I don’t think the $38K is reflective of the EV range, more reflective of the performance and the fact it is an Audi. While 22 miles isn’t ideal, it is at least a worthwhile amount of range to have for a PHEV. It beat’s Ford’s Energi cars by 3 miles.

Yeah, I would love for people to start questioning “luxury” and “performance”.
Audi A3 Sportback e-Tron
1.4-liter turbo four and electric motor = Combined output 204 hp
Analog gauge clusters with a tiny LCD screen
4year/50,000 mile warranty.
22 mile AER before gas.
EPA mpg?

204 hp isn’t exactly high performance
A little leather and wood trim isn’t exactly luxury
4year/50,000 mile warranty doesn’t communicate “quality”
22 miles AER (All Electric Range) doesn’t speak to technical prowess

Now, if they can provide the specs above while achieving 100mpg in hybird mode that would be something.

*shrug* Other than the price tag, what makes this Audi car a premium car?

From an “absolute” point of view, $38K for 22 miles electric-only is indeed meager. But you have to consider that Audi competes in the luxury segment. Therefore, at this price point, the A3 e-tron is a bargain and will certainly cause a commotion in the upper echelons of Mercedes and BMW…

A shake-up in “premium” brands is a good thing. I like the A3 e-Tron, just not at the price it’s at. The BMW i3 is more expensive, but it has a carbon fiber passenger cell!
Hopefully after the criminal behavior VW / Audi / Porsche engaged in with cheating pollution standards, they’ll commit to the EV side more and focus less on the status quo.

I made it 25 miles in a Ford Fusion energi ,
Smaller pack than the Audi , like to think I could do 25 in the Audi as well.
Still for me with a 62 mile rt commute , any car with an AER less than 75 miles means I must either charge at work or burn gas daily.

I’m baffled by your numbers game here. So you made it 25 miles in a “19 mile” car. But you need a “75 mile car” to go 62 miles?

25/19 = 132%

132% of 53 (new Volt) = 70 miles

I would think you could make your commute in electric-only with a 2016 Volt. At least in fair weather. But you certainly wouldn’t be burning gas “daily”.

The 19 miles range for the Fusion Energi is understated (they probably chose to be very conservative to avoid another flap like when they had to correct the numbers on the Monroney sticker). We regularly get 24-25 miles on ours as well.

That’s not the part that I was confused about. I regularly get 21-22 miles in my C-Max Energi, and it’s less aerodynamic than the Fusion (with an identical power train).

My confusion is in his bookkeeping. If he is getting 25 miles in a car rated for 19, he is obviously doing better than expected. This implies a more conservative driving style on his part. Yet when it comes to his 62 mile commute, he suddenly expects to do worse than average? It doesn’t add up. If he drives a 2016 Volt the same way he drives his Fusion Energi, it’s almost guaranteed that he will be able to do his commute without burning gas (weather permitting).

This car will win over a bunch of converts to plug in vehicles by appealing to a whole new market segment (similar to i3, but with more conventional tastes), and you can bet that for their next car, they will only want more EV range.


This is exactly why the new Audi E-Tron should be welcomed with open arms!

You nailed it.

There really is no similar offering (German, PHEV, wagon/hatchback). There is a die hard following for these cars and we might get some new skeptics to give it a try. PHEVs are the gateway drug.

I was looking closely at the A3 etron to purchase, but then I heard that VW group may also have found “irregularities” in what they reported regarding CO2 emiissions, although I’m not sure if the reported A3 CO2 is guilty or not. The A3 on CO2 was reported as lower than the Mitsubishi PHEV, and was quite attractive for those of us seeking to lower our carbon footprint. Also, we have not yet got an official US EPA electric range or mpg, right? I would surely want an independent testing of the reported CO2 or for Audi to tell us whether the reported value is irregular or not.

0-62 in about 7.6 sec. That’s about the time for 2015 SparkEV (0-60 7.2 sec) that cost $16K post subsidy in CA. AER of 22 miles of A3 e-tron is pathetic. I don’t understand why people will pick this over SparkEV, or even Volt if they want a hybrid. Wow, when did I turn to advocating for GM cars; it’s scary…

I think it’s obvious why someone (especially one who isn’t an EV enthusiast) would choose the E-Tron over the Spark EV. Especially in a one-car household.

As for the Volt, I have not sat in either car yet. I wouldn’t be surprised if the Audi had a more premium feel than the Chevy. Of course, it could be reversed, in which case people would only be buying it for the brand prestigue.

Try sitting in the A3 and the Volt and you’ll understand. It’s more roomy, can accomodate 3 people on the back seats, and generally has a much nicer interior than the current-generation Volt (haven’t sat in the new one yet).

You also have to remember that you are in the California EV Bubble.

There is no SparkEV where I am, I could actually buy an A3 Etron. There are about 280 million people in other states.

Any vehicle associated with cheating VW Group must be all electric period if they want my money.


I have an i3 Rex , )used to have a leaf) yup a 2016 volt I’m sure I would make the 62 miles most of the year ( except cold days, and maybe the super hot ones) but I would have to baby it.
My point was that while i like the Audi
That I would use lots of gas each , whereas withe the i3 Rex it’s rare but happens and o have fun driving it

Better then nothing but weak sauce compliance-mobile IMHO, probably because its an adapted ICE platform.
The new Volt blows away these relatively low range PHEVs in range and sportiness.
With the full tax credit almost paying for the larger battery, I just don’t understand these half-assed efforts.
I assume its primarily going to be sold in Europe for mainly compliance reasons.

Does anybody know if the Audi A3 e-tron will get green carpool stickers in CA? That info is missing everywhere which is a bit suspicious

No it will not. Major FAIL, like the pre 1201.5 Volts.

2012.5 Volts. It will not get the HOV stickers and they will run out probably before year end.

What models will qualify?
Qualifying vehicles will be posted to this web page. In general, vehicles that meet the Transitional Zero Emission Vehicle or TZEV requirement qualfity. These can include plug-in hybrid (PHEV) and hydrogen internal combustion engine (hydrogen ICE) vehicles. In order to be certified as an TZEV, PHEVs and hydrogen ICE vehicles must:

Meet California’s most stringent tailpipe emission standard
Have zero evaporative emissions
Have a 15 yr/150K mile warranty on the emissions system and;
Have a 10 yr/150K warranty on the zero emission energy storage system.
Not all PHEV and hydrogen ICE vehicles will meet these requirements.

I’m sure it will ALex but the problem is the Green stickers are about to run out so no dice unless they expand the program again.

Not sure why you think it will qualify.

There are very strict rules (posted above) and PAG (Porsche/Audi/VW) has never offered the 10 and 15 year warranties on any of their emission systems in previous or current plug-ins (Cayenne, Panamera). The A3 e-tron is based on 3+ year old technology so highly doubtful they thought of these restrictions (can you say early Volts?) when they designed the car.