Audi's Newest E-Tron SUV Will Be Forbidden Fruit

Spy Shots / Comments

Looks like the concept electric SUV Audi showed in Shanghai is entering production.

Back in April, Audi unveiled a new concept SUV at the Shanghai Auto Show alongside the A6 e-tron Concept. Dubbed the Audi concept Shanghai, the electric SUV measured 191.7 inches long, making it slightly smaller than the regular e-tron. For reference, the e-tron is 193 inches long.

At the time, the concept was presented as a design study with blacked-out windows hiding the interior, but Audi's latest electric SUV looks nearly ready for production. Our spy photographers have spotted Audi testing a prototype with production parts hiding under the camouflage. Design-wise, the production model looks almost identical to the concept, sharing the same LED headlights and daytime running lights.

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A full-width light bar connecting the taillights is also visible and a roof spoiler is hiding underneath the camo. Our spies were also able to look inside the cabin, which adopts a similar layout to the Q4 e-tron, incorporating a digital display and a floating infotainment screen. Effectively, it will be a more affordable alternative to the standard e-tron.

Underpinning the production version of the concept SUV will be Volkswagen Group's MEB platform, shared by the Volkswagen ID.6 and Audi Q4 e-tron. Like the ID.6, Audi's new electric SUV will likely be offered with a dual electric motor setup generating a combined 302 horsepower and 229 lb-ft of torque in its range-topping guise or a single motor rated at 177 hp.

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The concept shown in Shanghai offered a range of 560 kilometers (347 miles) based on the WLTP test cycles. It isn't known what the production version of the Audi concept Shanghai will be called. Despite being positioned between the Q4 and Q7, it won't be called the Q6 e-tron. That name is already reserved for a separate electric SUV that will go on sale in the US and share the same platform as the next-generation Porsche Macan EV.

The production version of the Audi concept Shanghai, on the other hand, will likely only be sold in China where there is a healthy appetite for electric SUVs and is expected to debut later this year or the first half of next year.

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