On a route taking them from Masdar City to Jebel Hafeet, the second highest mountain in the United Arab Emirates, journalists from all over the world are able to assess the 2019 Audi e-tron’s driving characteristics for the first time. The test route includes highways and twisty roads, as well as gravel tracks and sand.
After all, the e-tron is an SUV that should not be afraid to go off the beaten track. Audi claims that the electric crossover “demonstrates its excellent traction and dynamics” on loose surfaces thanks to the quattro electric all-wheel-drive system.
In the quest for more traction, AWD is assisted by numerous chassis systems including a four-stage electronic stabilization control and the standard Audi drive select system. Furthermore, the standard air suspension increases the e-tron’s ground clearance by 50 mm (2 in) on off-road terrain and lowers it by up to 26 mm (1 in) at highway speeds.
The e-tron doesn’t try very hard to look like an EV and that’s just fine
While waiting for video reviews to start populating our YouTube feeds, Audi has released a mega photo gallery from the event counting 303 images. So, if you’re a fan of the Audi e-tron or just interested to see it in more detail, chances are these pics will satisfy your curiosity.
They show the electric SUV in several colors, including the exclusive Antigua Blue. While the latter fits the e-tron perfectly, Catalunya Red and Siam Beige look at least as good. As you’ve probably noticed by now, all the cars in the gallery feature rearview cameras, even though those aren’t road-legal everywhere (the USA being one of those places).
They definitely look cool though and give the car a more futuristic appearance. Speaking of which, there aren’t that many futuristic-looking elements on the e-tron besides the rearview cameras, aero-sculpted alloys, and front grille with active shutters (used to cool electronic components). It pretty much looks like your average Audi SUV, which might ultimately be a good thing.
Most buyers don’t want an electric car whose appearance screams “I am electric” by adopting questionable styling traits. So instead, they might look for EVs with modern yet not outlandish designs. In this respect, the e-tron fits the bill just fine.
That goes for the interior as well, as other non-electric Audis such as the Q8, A8, A7 and A6 feature similar triple-screen dashboards. However, the e-tron has two more screens when equipped with the rearview cameras, one on each door.