Audi e-tron Launch Delayed Over Software Issue

OCT 22 2018 BY MARK KANE 26

Customers will wait at least 4 weeks longer for the e-tron.

Audi started production of the e-tron in early September and as we will soon enter November, one would ask where are those cars? Well, some are crowding the parking lot at the factory.

Reuters reports that the Audi e-tron is four-week delayed because of a software bug. A software bug is something that should be the easiest problem to solve (compared to replacement of some parts), but as it turns out, it requires some approvals (we guess it could have something to do with energy consumption or safety).

“The spokesman said Audi’s e-tron midsize SUV faced delay because the carmaker needs new regulatory clearance for a piece of software that was modified during the development process.”

Earlier this year, German newspaper Bild am Sonntag was reporting that delays could be up to several months, as well as that batteries from LG Chem turned out to be more expensive than anticipated.

“The e-tron delays were first reported by German newspaper Bild am Sonntag, citing sources close to the company. The paper said delivery could be delayed by several months.

The paper also said Audi was locked in price negotiations with LG Chem, the South-Korean supplier of batteries for its electric vehicles, which wants to increase prices by about 10 percent because of high demand.”

Source: Reuters

Categories: Audi


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26 Comments on "Audi e-tron Launch Delayed Over Software Issue"

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I guess someone found there was some bug in the cheat code to hide the secret diesel engine…. 😛

I though that the big companies did not have problems like this?

@jelloslug said: “I though that the big companies did not have problems like this?”

+ 1

The several recent EV production delay announcements by traditional car makes certainly greatly undermine Jim Chanos’s & Bob Lutz’s many past public comments about their belief that Tesla’s history of production delays is evidence that Tesla is in over their heads on car makining.

Just wait till legacy auto get their, act together, just wait till, oops, I already said that. They will mop the floor with Tesla.
How many times do we have to hear this? It’s just more legacy auto propaganda. The Germans understand propaganda well. Now Merkel is trying to protect them too.

“The paper also said Audi was locked in price negotiations with LG Chem, the South-Korean supplier of batteries for its electric vehicles, which wants to increase prices by about 10 percent because of high demand.”

Prices have already been negotiated in the past. Contracts must have been signed as well.

And now LG Chem wants to increase prices by about 10 percent.

LG Chem must have figured out that an enormous increase of demand for battery cells and battery packs is coming in the next few years.

Will LG Chem damage it’s reputation as a reliable business partner?

Re-Negotiations are absolutely normal in the car business. Years and years the big players re-negotiated the contracts. Now LG Chem is in the position to do the same.
Using your standards, every german car maker is an absolutely unreliable business partner.

Furthermore, do you know the contracts?

“Re-Negotiations are absolutely normal in the car business.”


After a few years, that would have been a kind of “normal”. But the initial price negotiations can’t be that long ago. Because the first deliveries still have to take place yet.

And no, I don’t know the contracts.

Maybe LG is seeing the list price of these vehicles, and thinks it’s not justified based on the battery price it signed with Audi.

Maybe it’s due to the introduction of CATL on MEB platform.

First of all, where did you see anything about CATL on MEB? And second, how would that prompt price hikes on LG’s side?…

If you look at website (translate with google) and go to e-tron reservation page, you’ll find in the FAQ that deliveries are not expected until February 2019.
Just to let you know in case you want to check later developments.

Since Audi is already several years behind Tesla, and the ‘Tron is intended for a narrow niche, why would it matter for anybody (except for the devoted Audi fans) if it is delayed for a few more weeks or months?

Well there are over 6300 orders in Norway and about 15000 internationally. All people that put down over 2000€. So there is considerable interest if you compare it to the numbers of Audis Q5 and Q7.

Oh, I have no doubt that thousands are interested in the ‘Tron – largely from the same pool of Audi fans that would normally go for similar, but ICE-powered Audi SUV’s.

For real-life, consequential EV news we should be looking at Tesla, BYD, Hyundai/Kia, GM and Nissan/Renault – I think.

Funny: Tesla bashing is one of the top favourite activities of german newspapers (Spiegel, Sueddeutsche, you name it). Now that Audi is suffering from delays, nothing! Dead silence…

Because it is an unconfirmed rumour in a tabloid about demonstration cars for dealerships getting delayed because some paperwork needs to be cleared. This doesn’t even mean that customers will get their cars any later. The production hasn’t been stopped.

Nope, this is absolutely no rumor. The 4 week delay is confirmed by Audi!

Yeah, because they never report on rumours…

Yes. We take notice and it’s why we don’t publish all the continued negativity. Yes, Tesla is new and has struggled immensely. Make no mistake, it has been a long hard road and for years we were skeptical and even negative at times. But, note that the automaker has surely proven itself – and since we are an ultimately pro-EV site and pushing EV adoption – we have changed our tone to some degree. In terms of EV production, delivery, and adoption, there’s none better. Do we advise and push and hope that OEMs will change their game plan and get on board sooner rather than later? Of course. Hopefully, we all know here that Big Auto could surely give Tesla a huge run for its money. They have to funding and clout to do so. But when? How? We are pushing that like crazy. I will be honest to say that I can’t possibly afford a Tesla. And, I can’t hold Tesla stock. But, at some point soon, OEMs need to get with the program. Do we understand why they aren’t? But, of course! It really makes zero sense right now for Big Auto to push forth. Nope. Stay… Read more »

Some Audi shorts on Twitter are claiming these full parking lots mean there is no demand for this car and writers on Seeking Alpha are saying this is proof Audi is going bankrupt.

Seems like a dog’s age ago, GM bragged about getting $143/KWh from LG Chem, for its Bolt. What price could be more expensive than Audi thought?

IIRC Audi claimed $115 per kWh a while back?…

Another Euro point of view

Local news I read here in Europe says that the delay is caused by a price disagreement with provider LG Chem.

This is why old school OEM’s will struggle in the new world. The EV is an electrical appliance just like a smartphone and software is equally important as hardway. Tesla is run by a guy that used to code; Apple creates its own OS, etc.

I know good programmers because they learn to code when memory was very expensive. One of friends works for a consulting firm and he had to get recerified in COBOL because the State of California gov’t agencies still runs on COBOL (this is 2018 and these agencies are still using COBOL???).

I hate to admit it but unless the OEMs catch up to Apple’s or Tesla’s command of user friendly software, their EV will not be competitive. Apple set the standard a long time ago that software should be intuitive for the user.

After the Diesel-gate scandal there is a new law to prevent software defeat or similar devices, so subcontractors are obliged to ‘certify’ the car manufacturer to make sure the suppliers parts or software is not used for cheating again.

This is now even delaying pure EV production like the small city-car ‘E.Go’ from the street-scooter company (actually university of Aachen), which needs to be certified from their suppliers that ‘E.Go’ is not cheating emissions ….. this extra certification is causing half a year delay.

Wild guess: maybe Audi has a similar certification issue delaying the E-Tron release ???

E.Go does does not have any kind of business connection with Streetscooter AFAIK. The only connection is that the RWTH professor who was one of the co-founders of Streetscooter, is also behind this entirely new company.