It's happening far sooner than you think.
The race towards electrified vehicles continues as automakers adapt to the changing times. The Volkswagen Group is an ideal example. Unlike Tesla, the VW Group has several brands and isn't solely dedicated to battery-electric powertrains yet. That goal is still a few years away and in the meantime, it will continue to launch pure EVs, such as the Audi e-tron and Porsche Taycan, and electrified versions of existing models, like the Audi Q5 and Porsche Macan.
We've known about plans regarding the latter pair for some time, but now a leaked VW Group presentation, discovered by Romanian news site Automarket, indicates both are due to arrive in 2022. The Audi Q5 e-tron and Porsche Macan EV will be unveiled alongside the production version of the VW ID Buzz retro-inspired van.
But why electrify existing nameplates instead of launching separate and all-new vehicles? Because name recognition matters and since luxury SUVs are already in high demand, as are their plug-in hybrid variants, interest in fully-electric versions will continue to grow.
BMW already has a fully electric X3 SUV, called the iX3, though it's sold in Europe and China only. The Q5 e-tron and Macan EV, as of now, will be sold in the US. The Q4 e-tron, a crossover coupe, will debut in 2021 though it'll offer less interior and cargo space than its Q5 counterpart.
The Macan EV, a vehicle our spy photographers recently caught testing, will cost significantly less than the $100,000+ Taycan and will apparently adapt a coupe body style, just like the Q4. Powertrain details for the battery-powered Q5 and Macan remain unknown, though Porsche has acknowledged we can expect Macan Turbo and Turbo S-like performance. Both vehicles will be based on the new Premium Platform Electric architecture jointly developed by Audi and Porsche.
But does this mean combustion-powered versions of the next-generation Macan and Q5 are already dead? No, Porsche has disclosed a conventionally-powered next-gen Macan is still happening and chances are this is also true for the Q5.