Audi’s e-tron GT is a sublime cruiser, chewing up miles between charges in comfort and class. The e-tron GT is a sleek electric vehicle that doubles as a grand tourer and a performance car. It competes against a range of luxury electrics such as the Porsche Taycan, Tesla Model S, and the forthcoming BMW i4. If you need to drive 200 miles in comfort and want to look good doing it, there are few cars that can do it better. New for 2022, the e-tron GT makes its debut in two versions: the e-tron GT and RS e-tron GT, which offers more power and performance. It shares a platform with its Volkswagen Group sibling, the Porsche Taycan.
Good doesn’t go far enough, the e-tron GT is a great-looking car with a sleek, sultry shape that draws eyes from all angles. The e-tron GT’s beautiful exterior earns stares from onlookers and while the interior takes fewer styling risks, it is attractive in that understated Audi way. It’s hard to point to a single e-tron GT feature that makes it stand out so much, the profile of the vehicle makes the smaller details blend together with its smoothness. There is a front grille, though it can be ordered in body color if you don’t want it to stand out so much and it makes the nose look more futuristic.
The e-tron GT offers explosive powertrains in both versions; even the non-RS versions are plenty quick, scooting from 0-60 mph in under four seconds. Both versions of the e-tron GT come with a dual-motor setup that places one electric motor at each axle for standard all-wheel drive. The two e-tron GT models share the same basic setup, but software differences allow the RS to pull much more power from the 93.4-kWh battery pack the two models share. The e-tron GT outputs 496 hp and 464 lb-ft of torque at most times, though a boost feature jumps those figures up to 522 hp and 472 lb-ft in bursts. The RS produces 590 hp and 612 lb-ft, and it too can be boosted up to 637 hp.
This prodigious power output allows the e-tron GT to make the sprint from 0-60 mph in 3.9 seconds, while the RS turns in a supercar-esque time of just 3.1 seconds. Both models feature launch control that’s extremely easy to activate. Flip the car into its “Dynamic” drive mode, stand on the brake, and floor the accelerator. The digital speedometer blips to let you know it’s turned on and once you drop the brake pedal the e-tron GT springs forward with a snap. Make sure you warn passengers to put their heads back before you do this in either model. While the e-tron GT seems to taper off a bit over 70 mph, the RS has no such problems pushing past highway speeds with ease and feeling more robust off the line, unsurprisingly.
Underneath, the e-tron GT and RS come with a standard three-chamber adaptive air suspension. A Performance package is offered on the e-tron that also adds a rear torque vectoring system, power steering boost at low speeds, and rear-wheel steering (all of those features are standard on the RS except for the rear-wheel steering). This suspension skews toward comfort and does a good job of controlling rebound, making the e-tron GT an exceptional cruiser for long trips. Audi does a good job of building steering resistance off center perfect for curvy, canyon roads. RS models come with standard carbide brakes with larger front and rear rotors, with a ceramic brake package optional.
The e-tron GT tops out at 238 miles of estimated range. Despite the difference in power between the two models, range estimates are quite close: 238 miles for the e-tron GT and 232 miles for the RS. The e-tron GT offers 82 combined MPGe (the RS is 81 combined MPGe) with its 93.4-kwh battery pack. For comparison, the Lucid Air Grand Touring gets 131 MPGe and the Tesla Model S (non-Plaid) offers 120 MPGe, and both vehicles have larger battery packs. Where the e-tron GT excels is by offering an 800-volt architecture, and with 800-volt DC fast-charging it can fill the battery from 5% to 80% in just 22 minutes, provided you can find a charging station that will deliver close to the vehicle’s 270-kw maximum charging power. Audi is also providing a three year complimentary DC fast-charging plan for buyers via Electrify America.
The e-tron GT has yet to be crash tested yet by the IIHS or the NHTSA, but it does come with a strong set of standard and available safety features. Automatic forward emergency braking, traffic sign recognition, front and rear parking sensors, lane departure warnings, and blind spot monitors all come on every e-tron GT. A surround view camera system, adaptive cruise control, and active lane control are also available.
Inside, the styling is more conventional Audi with an understated look and familiar screens/switches to Audi’s other vehicles. In a win for simplicity, there are switches for the climate functions and drive modes rather than the second screen that most Audi’s employ. The dashboard features a pair of screens, a 12.3-inch display for the driver and a 10.1-inch touchscreen for the infotainment. Materials are befitting of a luxury vehicle and the fit-and-finish is spot on. The biggest difference between the two vehicles is found on top, where the e-tron GT comes with a panoramic glass roof and the RS features a carbon fiber roof. Backseat room is tight for such a large vehicle, with the vehicle’s shape cutting sharply into the rear headroom, but still comfortable.
The front seats are very comfortable and overall materials quality is high throughout the cabin, as expected from Audi. 14-way powered and heated front seats are standard and they are wonderfully comfortable and supportive, with bolstering that keeps you well contained without pinching in. The cabin materials are equally good, befitting of a luxury vehicle with a six-figure starting price. Audi also made a key interior configuration decision that I really like, eliminating the second touchscreen in favor of switches for the climate functions and drive mode/traction control settings.
There is plenty to like in all of the e-tron GT’s trim levels. A strong standard features list, large infotainment screen, and a solid set of options make the e-tron GT an attractive option. Most shoppers will best fit into the e-tron GT, as the massive jump in price to reach the high performance RS is not a mountain that most will be willing to climb. The e-tron GT is offered in two trim levels: Premium Plus ($100,945) and Prestige ($110,645).
Standard features include artificial leather upholstery, 20-inch alloy wheels, 14-way powered and heated front seats, LED headlights, panoramic glass roof, a 12.3 inch instrument cluster screen, and a 10.1-inch infotainment screen that is slightly canted towards the driver for easier access. Prestige models add a head-up display, adaptive cruise control, active lane control, heated rear seats, and a Bang & Olufsen sound system.
For both e-tron GT variants, if you want them to perform more like the RS (but without the power boost), a Performance package ($6,000) is available that adds rear wheel steering, unique 20-inch wheels, an upgraded differential that can lock the rear, blacked out trim pieces, and carbon-fiber inserts on the interior. A leather package ($4,000) is also available that adds plenty of cowhide and upgrades the front seats to add 18-way adjustments, cooling, and massage features. For its first year of production, the RS e-tron GT is being offered with a Year One package that includes the Carbon performance and full leather packages, along with 21-inch wheels and red contrast stitching/seat belts on the interior. It bumps the RS price tag from around $140,000 to beyond $165,000.
For electric vehicles, Audi is still the new kid on the block with only the e-tron SUV before the GT. With knockouts like the e-tron GT though, Audi is quickly upping their game. With stunning looks, commendable driving manners, and topnotch technology; it’s easy to see how the new 2022 Audi e-tron GT is stellar. For those looking to try something new and step out of the current Tesla lemmings of questionable quality, the new e-tron GT is definitely worth a look. Don’t forget to wipe the smile off your face when you get out.
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