Audi has announced a substantial overhaul of its Q4 e-tron and Q4 e-tron Sportback models for 2024, ushering in critical enhancements in power, range, battery technology, and a suite of innovative features. These updates, which are set to be available for order in Europe starting this fall, are expected to reach the shores of the United States by late 2024.
Power Boost and Acceleration
A standout feature of the 2024 lineup is the introduction of a new permanently excited synchronous motor on the rear axle, replacing the rear motors on the Q4 40 e-tron and Q4 50 e-tron models. This change results in a significant power boost, with the Q4 40 now delivering 282 horsepower and the Q4 50 packing an impressive 335 horsepower. Remarkably, this now places the rear-wheel-drive (RWD) models on par with the Quattro models in terms of power, both boasting 295 horsepower. As a result, all Q4 e-tron models can reach a top speed of 112 mph.
This increase in power also translates to improved acceleration across the range. The Q4 40 model, benefiting from an 81-horsepower bump, now accomplishes the 0-62 mph sprint in just 6.7 seconds, a substantial improvement over the previous 7.9 seconds. Meanwhile, the Q4 50 models enjoy a 40-horsepower boost, reducing the 0-62 mph time to an impressive 5.4 seconds.
Enhanced Efficiency and Extended Range
The new motor is not only more potent but also significantly more efficient, leading to an extended range. While precise figures remain undisclosed, Audi has revealed that the Q4 Sportback 40 e-tron achieves a range of 349 miles on the WLTP cycle. This translates to an estimated 300-310 miles under EPA testing, a notable improvement over the current model's 265-mile range. Similarly, the Quattro version is expected to improve from 236 miles of range to approximately 280 miles.
The 82 kWh battery remains, but optimized cell chemistry has resulted in faster charging times, with a 10-80% charge taking only about 28 minutes, down from 36 minutes. Quattro models will now boast a maximum DC charging speed of 175 kW, an upgrade from their previous 150 kW capability, while RWD models will maintain a 150 kW limit.
Additionally, new software features offer greater control over the battery's lifespan, with options to limit charges to 80% and preplan trips to Fast Chargers using GPS, minimizing wait times upon arrival. Furthermore, post-conditioning enables the thermal management system to cool the battery after spirited driving, maintaining optimal performance.
Driving Experience and Technology
Audi has fine-tuned the suspension on these models, promising an improved balance of comfort, fun, and stability. A notable addition is the ability to use assisted lane changes and adaptive cruise control in tandem at speeds above 56 mph on highways, a first for Audi. While no specific speed limit for this function has been disclosed, it allows drivers to benefit from lane changes facilitated by the vehicle itself.
In terms of technology, the 2024 models come equipped with Audi MMI Navigation Plus, Audi Connect Navigation and Infotainment, and a fully digital 10.25-inch instrument panel featuring Audi virtual cockpit, all now included as standard. Additionally, power liftgates and heated seats are now standard features. For those seeking a distinctive touch, Audi introduces the Edition S line, featuring dark accents and bronze highlights.
Innovative Character Sound
Adding an intriguing auditory dimension to the driving experience, the 2024 models feature a unique “character sound” emitted through exterior and interior speakers. This dynamic sound adapts to the vehicle's speed and acceleration, distinguishing it from competitors. Importantly, it can be disabled at any time, ensuring flexibility for drivers. The legally required low-speed Acoustic Vehicle Alerting System remains active to enhance safety.
The 2024 Audi Q4 e-tron and Q4 e-tron Sportback are set to become available for order in Europe starting September 26, with prices starting at 52,950 euros ($56,454, current exchange rate). Given the substantial upgrades, an increase in price is anticipated over the 2023 Q4 e-tron, which starts at $49,800. The automotive world eagerly awaits the arrival of these refreshed models, poised to offer an even more compelling electric driving experience.