There is a new reduced price, new range and multiple updates in various areas and a new Premium trim level.
First of all, both models are now up to $9,000 (or up to 12%) less expensive, which may translate into much higher sales:
- 2021 e-tron starts from $65,900 (MSRP) plus $1,095 of destination charge, which is effectively $59,495 (after deducting $7,500 of federal tax credit).
The 2019 e-tron was offered at $74,800 (MSRP) and effectively at $68,295.
- 2021 e-tron Sportback starts from $69,100 (MSRP) plus $1,095 of destination charge, which is effectively $62,695 (after deducting $7,500 of federal tax credit).
The recently introduced 2020 model year version was priced at 77,400 (MSRP) and effectively $70,895.
That quite substantial drop in price means that sales should increase and by the way, Audi will make space to introduce the sporty S versions of both models at a higher price.
The second most important change is the increase of range of e-tron SUV from 204 miles (328 km) EPA to 222 miles (357 km) EPA-estimated. That's 18 miles or 8.8% more than in the 2019 model year version.
The company explains that the car has more range through optimized drive system hardware and software adjustments. For example, the front electric motor can be entirely disengaged to save power.
"As technology progresses, the e-tron lineup has seen its most significant improvements with available battery capacity and efficiency. For a more efficient configuration, thanks to a number of optimizations, the front electric motor is able to be entirely disengaged, dramatically reducing power usage when not needed. Only when the driver demands more power or traction do both motors spring into action..."
Another big factor is almost 3 kWh of additional available energy from the 95 kWh pack (86.5 kWh is usable in both e-tron/e-tron Sportback) - that's 3.6% more. The battery buffer is now 8.5 kWh (or almost 9% of total).
"...the usable amount of the high-voltage battery has increased for the model year 2021 e-tron lineup. The battery in the Audi e-tron and e-tron Sportback have a total capacity of 95 kWh and now gives customers access to a net energy figure of 86.5 kWh— almost 3 kWh more than 2019 e-tron model. The energy buffer is designed to help ensure customers enjoy sustained battery performance throughout the life of the vehicle."
The 2021 e-tron Sportback will remain at 218 miles (351 km) EPA as the recently introduced 2020 model year version. As the Sportback is more aerodynamic, we guess that it will get some boost next time, as it's supposed to get more range than the SUV version.
"In response to customer feedback, enhancements have been made to every category for model year 2021 e-tron vehicles for a more accessible and well packaged portfolio. Unique to the e-tron SUV, in addition to the entry Premium trim is the available distinct Convenience Plus Package, featuring the Driver assistance package and Black exterior trim kit including matte black grille, front and rear bumper trim and on the e-tron SUV, matte black roof rails."