The new Audi pure electric A4: It should have been released last year, but in fact it will not be available until the year after

The next-generation A4 will be sold as the A5 model, and the A6 will also be officially renamed the A7 in the future.

In an interview with German automotive media, former Audi CEO Markus Duesmann responded positively.

Not limited to A4 and A6, Audi also hopes to take this opportunity to re-formulate naming rules. Markus Duesmann revealed that in the future, Audi's odd-numbered numbers will correspond to internal combustion engine models, while even-numbered numbers will correspond to pure electric models alone, and Audi will also retain the "E-tron" suffix in the pure electric series to highlight The uniqueness of pure electric models.

▲ Markus Duesmann Picture from: imago images

Breaking the naming precedent, Audi's next-generation models will adhere to the strategy of parallel pure electric and internal combustion engine versions until Audi completely transitions to the era of full electrification.

The bottom-up pure electric revolution first took place on the A4 model, which is responsible for the "volume" mission.

Next-generation A4 Avant revealed, A4 E-tron with high hopes

The first to be captured on road tests was Audi's new A4 Avant.

In the first half of this year, this A4 Avant was frequently spotted undergoing winter testing on icy and snowy roads. It can be seen from the spy photos in the media that the front face of the road test car uses Audi's classic honeycomb grille, not a closed grille.

The new model has some new changes in appearance details. The first is the overall body posture. Compared with the current A4 Avant, the new model has a lower posture. Audi is expected to re-adjust the sports suspension stroke for the new Avant model to make the model more comfortable. The front overhang is shorter and tighter; in addition, the exposed exhaust pipe style at the rear of the car has also undergone some subtle changes. The square black exhaust pipe style is guessed to be Audi's new S-Line sports kit.

▲ It is suspected to be the new A4 E-tron travel version in winter testing. Picture from: autoevolution

It is worth mentioning that we also found electric traces of this road test car on the side of the car. There is a conspicuous "charging port" design on the left rear side of the car. The captured road test car is probably the A4 E -The travel version of tron.

▲The conspicuous charging port on the Avant model-the above picture comes from: autoevolution

In fact, there have been reports that Audi has been intensively debugging the pure electric A4 E-tron recently. For Audi, A4 not only has to shoulder the responsibility of "moving volume" in the fuel era, but also takes the lead among traditional luxury car companies in the pure electric era.

According to channel news, the new A4 E-tron will follow the A6/Q6 E-tron models and be equipped with the PPE (Premium Platform Electric) pure electric architecture jointly developed by Audi and Porsche. The new car will use a new 100-degree large battery and be compatible with 800V high-voltage charging. Compared with Audi's previous generation MEB architecture, the maximum charging power of the A4 E-tron can reach 270kW, which can support the A4 E-tron to replenish 155 miles (approximately 250 kilometers) of battery life in 10 minutes. This recharge speed is Q4 2 times that of E-tron (using MEB architecture) model.

The addition of the new PPE pure electric architecture unleashes the range and charging potential of Audi's electric models.

▲ Next-generation A4 interior spy photos from: Motor1

In addition, based on the PPE high-performance pure electric platform, Audi uses motors to make a more concise model classification. Compared with the relatively complicated configuration classification of the previous A4 fuel version, the new A4 E-tron uses motor as the dividing line to provide two configuration models, namely a single motor rear-wheel drive model and a dual-motor four-wheel drive model.

Among them, the single-motor rear-drive A4 45 E-tron, with 261 horsepower and 425N·m torque, will be launched as the entry-level model of the A4 E-tron series; while the top-of-the-line model uses a dual-motor four-drive solution. The A4 55 E-tron has 402 horsepower and 664N·m of torque.

Interestingly, Audi has not stopped exploring high-performance lines on the E-tron model. Audi will launch an S4 E-tron with more than 500 horsepower based on the A4 E-tron, and the RS4 E-tron is also in Audi's electrification plan.

Audi has drawn a "product curve" for the A4 E-tron series that is almost consistent with the fuel series.

Pure electric "last train", benchmarking against Tesla

The A4 E-tron carries Audi’s ambition to seize the market.

(EVs) Have great proportions, which makes our designers very happy.

In an interview with the media, Markus Duesmann described the status of Audi’s internal team developing pure electric models. He believes that pure electric models will account for a large proportion of Audi's product range, and the development of pure electric models excites Audi's design team.

The shorter front overhang creates a lower body posture, which has become the most eye-catching design element of the Audi E-tron series. Audi believes that outstanding product strength and recognition can make the E-tron series stand out in the pure electric era. According to internal expectations, the goal of the new generation A4 is not to compete in BBA's traditional luxury circle. They believe that the direct competitor of the A4 E-tron should be the "pure electric leader" Tesla.

The ideal is very full, but the reality is very skinny.

There is still a slight chance of winning by using brand value to benchmark Tesla, but in the domestic pure electric market, the product strength of the A4 E-tron cannot be considered excellent even now.

Moreover, the new A4 E-tron seems to be far from being launched on the market. According to Audi's internal planning, the new generation of A4 E-tron will only enter the mass production stage in 2025. With full budget, it will be as early as 2024. It won't be unveiled until the end of the year.

In the fiercely competitive pure electric track, Audi's movements are obviously much slower. A cruel fact is that the "100kWh large battery" and "800V high voltage" that Audi's PPE platform is proud of may have been worthy of a "bookmark" last year. If Audi released such a car last year, That is bound to usher in thunderous applause from the market, and we can even congratulate that "a century-old car company is still young." But the reality is that in 2023, these two pure electric technologies can hardly be called "new".

New domestic forces are rolling out technology much faster than we imagined. In terms of battery technology, Qianli Kirin batteries are in charge of high-end products, and lithium iron phosphate fast-charging batteries are also available for basic products to consolidate demand. It is difficult to bring outstanding performance to model products simply by relying on large-capacity advantageous batteries; in addition, 800V Silicon carbide high-voltage fast charging is not worthy of "big book" now. New car companies represented by Zhiji have even begun to explore 900V high-voltage fast charging.

It can be expected that compared with the first echelon of pure electric vehicles, the Audi A4 E-tron, which will only begin mass production in 2025, will be difficult to avoid the situation of "falling behind as soon as it is released." Losing the competitiveness of pure electric technology leaves only the "brand value" that traditional luxury car companies cannot erase. In the end, it will just "stand still and achieve nothing."

A4-Etron is like a frequent traveler on a journey. By 2025, Audi will only be able to catch the "last train".

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