Electrification is a big talking point right now, and with their potential to cut CO2 emissions, Audi is examining how viable PHEVs may be to its Australian range
Audi Australia is evaluating whether plug-in hybrid variants of existing models could be viable in our market, with further details to be announced in the coming months.
With European CO2 mandates in force, Audi’s production allocation of electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles has been strongly skewed toward the automaker’s home continent.
Speaking to Chasing Cars, Audi Australia corporate communications manager Shaun Cleary indicated: “[Audi Australia] is examining what portfolio might be available to us as a future step in our electrification strategy.
“The focus in recent years has been on bringing some remarkable full EVs to market, such as the E-tron first in 2020… but now there’s opportunity to look at some PHEVs joining the range in the future.”
With right-hand drive production of popular models running at full steam for the UK, Audi Australia has a broad portfolio to choose from.
When pressed about which segments would be most viable for PHEV introduction, Mr Cleary said it was “too early to give any indication”, though he did suggest that strong-selling models would obviously be given more consideration.
Both the A3 and Q3 40 TFSI e models employ the same powertrain built around a 1.4-litre turbo petrol four-cylinder with a single electric motor boosting outputs of 180kW/350Nm, matching the Cupra Leon VZe soon to go on sale in Australia.
The A3’s electric range is around 60km; while the heavier Q3 only manages 50km using the same 13kWh lithium ion battery pack.
Audi’s other most likely PHEV candidate is the Q5 55 TFSI e. It uses a larger 2.0-litre turbo petrol four-cylinder coupled with an electric motor and quattro AWD system. The total power output is 270kW, and its larger 17.9kWh battery gives a 60km all electric range.
With models still a long way from being locked in – or even confirmed – pricing is tricky to predict.
BMW’s model lineup does give an indication, however, with the $104,900 (before on-road costs) X3 xDrive 30e commanding a $15,000 premium over the 30i on which it’s based.
This suggests a $10,000-15,000 up-charge over an equivalent combustion-engined Audi.
That would put a plug-in A3 around $65K, a Q3 at $75K and a Q5 between $95-100K. Unknowns and curve balls include inflation, specification and battery pricing that will be determined in the future.
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