Nice try Audi.
Audi is hard at work developing its e-tron branded lineup of all-electric vehicles. Already there's the Audi e-tron SUV and Sportback. Later this year, the e-tron GT sedan will debut, assuming the coronavirus pandemic won't delay that. But there's another EV on its way that'll compete directly against the Tesla Model Y. The Audi Q4 e-tron, previously previewed by a concept version at the 2019 Geneva Motor Show, is set for a 2021 reveal and the automaker remains busy preparing for that.
Our spy photographers have just caught a Q4 mule undergoing winter testing in northern Sweden, but there's one important thing to note here: Audi tried to disguise this prototype. It's not wearing the Q4's body but rather that of the also upcoming Volkswagen ID.4. Why is that?
Because both share the same Modular Electrification Platform (MEB) from the VW Group. Despite the different body designs, both the Q4 and ID.4 will have the same basic greenhouse. Expect the production-spec Q4 to closely resemble the concept.
But how do we know this is the Q4 and not the ID.4? Look closely and you'll notice there are Ingolstadt (Audi's hometown) license plates and the typical camouflage foil the brand uses for all other test mules. Furthermore, our spies even spoke to an Audi test driver who not only confirmed the vehicle's true identity but also said it features electric motors at both the front and rear axle.
Translation: the Q4 e-tron will be a quattro. This shouldn't come as a huge surprise but it's still good to know. Other precise details, such as range, remain unknown, but Audi previously hinted the EV will come with an 82 kWh battery and a WLTP-rated range of at least 280 miles.
Size-wise, the Q4 will between the Q3 and Q5, but interior space will exceed that of the latter thanks to its longer wheelbase, a requirement for the large floor-mounted battery pack. Production will take place in Germany and it's also possible a future Q4 e-tron Sportback will one day be built alongside the standard SUV body style.
As for the somewhat similar ID.4, it was initially supposed to be revealed at the now-canceled New York Auto Show. A new debut date has yet to be announced.