You can now buy Audi’s $100,000 electric super sedan – check out the E-Tron GT

Audi E-Tron GT electric sedan.
The Audi E-Tron GT takes direct aim at Tesla’s sportiest Model S.

  • Audi has launched the E-Tron GT, its $100,000 flagship electric sedan.
  • Its sportiest version, the $140,000 RS, claims 590 horsepower and a 0-60-mph time of 3.1 seconds.
  • The E-Tron GT is now available to configure on Audi’s website.
  • Visit the Business section of Insider for more stories.

Audi has launched the E-Tron GT, a high-end sport sedan that’s a sibling to the Porsche Taycan and takes aim at the Tesla Model S.

The E-Tron GT, revealed through in February, hit the market on Tuesday, Audi said. It starts at just shy of $100,000 for the base model, with another trim level retailing for around $107,000.

The top-of-the-line, high-performance RS model will cost $139,900, $10,000 more than Tesla’s sportiest sedan, the Model S Plaid. The RS E-Tron GT, we found out in May, is an absolute hoot to drive.

Audi E-Tron GT electric sport sedan.
2022 Audi E-Tron GT.

Although the E-Tron GT doesn’t promise quite the same extreme performance as the Plaid, it’s certainly not lacking on that front. It shares its underpinnings with the Porsche Taycan, as both brands fall under the Volkswagen umbrella.

Powered by two motors – one at each axle – the standard model puts out a combined 469 horsepower and 464 lb-ft of torque, by Audi’s estimation. The company says it can hit 60 mph in 3.9 seconds, on its way to a top speed of 152 mph.

The RS version steps things up a notch with a more powerful rear motor that boosts total output to 590 horsepower and 612 lb-ft of torque. The RS goes from 0-60 in 3.1 seconds and has a top speed of 155 mph, Audi claims. The RS accelerates quicker than the V10-powered Audi R8 sports car, the company notes.

Audi E-Tron GT electric sport sedan.
2022 Audi E-Tron GT.

As for range, Audi says the E-Tron GT can travel 238 miles on a charge, while the RS model can go 232 miles. Using DC fast charging, the car can add 62.1 miles of range in five minutes or recharge from 5% to 80% battery in a little over 22 minutes, according to Audi. Tesla, for comparison, doesn’t sell a Model S with less than 390 miles of estimated range.

Read more: A wave of consolidation is coming for the electric-vehicle startup game in 2021, an industry insider says

The E-Tron GT gets a leather-free interior as standard, featuring recycled and synthetic materials instead – although buyers can add leather as an option. It comes equipped with a 12.3-inch display for the instrument cluster and a 10.1-inch main touchscreen, a bit more restrained than Tesla’s 17-inch center screen.

Audi E-Tron GT electric sport sedan interior.
2022 Audi E-Tron GT.

Notable options include four-wheel steering, upgraded headlights, a head-up display, massaging seats, adaptive air suspension, and a carbon-fiber roof for the RS model.

Audi plans to have 30% of its US lineup be either fully electric or hybrid by 2025. The brand has made headway on that front by launching the E-Tron and E-Tron Sportback crossovers – and in April it revealed its cheapest EV yet, the sub-$45,000 Q4 E-Tron.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Audi’s $140,000 RS E-Tron GT was my first time driving an EV – and it showed me our absurdly fast electric future

Audi RS E-Tron GT
2022 Audi RS E-Tron GT.

  • I drove Audi’s upcoming flagship EV: the 2022 RS E-Tron GT.
  • It was a thrilling and sometimes terrifying first experience driving an electric car.
  • The 637-horsepower RS E-Tron GT starts at $139,900 and goes on sale this summer.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

In the days and hours leading up to my drive in the 2022 Audi RS E-Tron GT, a viral clip of a Porsche Taycan crash played on repeat in my head.

The grainy video shows a $100,000-plus Porsche EV pull into a driveway and stop for a moment before abruptly launching full bore into another car, off a ledge, and onto a street-parked SUV. As my date with one of Germany’s quickest and most advanced electric vehicles – a close cousin to the Taycan – drew nearer, I was certain I’d meed a similar fate.

You see, when Audi invited me to drive its upcoming flagship EV for around an hour earlier this month, I had never been behind the wheel of an electric car before. Moreover, I had never piloted a speed demon like the 637-horsepower RS E-Tron GT, which starts at $139,900, or its equally sporty Porsche relative.

And if that unfortunate Taycan video taught me anything, it’s that in the wrong – or even just the distracted – hands, high-performance EVs can become a bit like a rocket ship in the hands of a toddler.

Audi RS E-Tron GT
2022 Audi RS E-Tron GT.

Seeing as I write about transportation and EVs for a living, I knew that from commuter Kias to sporty Teslas, electric cars deliver near-instantaneous, gut-punching acceleration unlike any gas-powered vehicle – and they do so without the auditory and tactile cues of a combustion engine, given that EVs’ elasticky pedals are met with near-silent acceleration. That likely factored into the ill-fated Taycan’s trip over a nearby ledge.

I also knew the RS E-Tron GT’s 637 peak horsepower and 612 pound-feet of torque is an awful lot, and that the four-door sedan’s promised ability to hit 60 mph in 3.1 seconds puts it firmly in supercar territory. But I’d never experienced such things for myself and I wasn’t sure what to expect.

Audi RS E-Tron GT
2022 Audi RS E-Tron GT.

With some words of encouragement from my colleagues, I decided to go for it. “Don’t drive it off a cliff,” one staff transportation editor wise beyond her years told me.

My fears weren’t exactly alleviated when I arrived at the location and saw I’d embark on my guided drive from a mountaintop home, which meant I’d have to start out by navigating down a steep, narrow drive with lots of tight twists and turns. It was the perfect setting for a viral video titled “IDIOT JOURNALIST WRECKS $140K AUDI [LOST HIS JOB & DIGNITY].”

I set off at low speeds, trying to ease my fears and my potential to go viral. But the Audi stepped in where I lacked – its smooth power delivery was manageable and not at all jerky, even if I struggled a bit to see the road over the sedan’s long hood from its low seating position. Still, I tackled the descent without smashing into a tree or launching myself off the side of the mountain, which I chalked up to a victory.

Audi RS E-Tron GT
2022 Audi RS E-Tron GT.

The real test, however, would be whether I could graduate to more normal speeds without wrapping this $140,000 car I didn’t own around a guardrail.

Once I turned onto the main road, I went for it. After putting my foot down a few times, my jitters morphed into a kind of unhinged glee. As someone whose typical means of transportation are a bike and a 30-year-old Volvo that’s only slightly faster than said bike, the E-Tron GT’s raw speed and brutal torque – overwhelming as it was – had me downright giddy. I was in a rocket ship, but I somehow felt like I had control over it.

Audi RS E-Tron GT
2022 Audi RS E-Tron GT.

When you give a traditional car some gas, you can feel it gradually rumble up to speed, hear the engine rev up to higher RPMs. But there’s none of that buildup in the E-Tron GT – or in any other EV. The car immediately leaps forward with each press of the pedal, and there’s no noise accompanying that motion aside from an artificial, futuristic whine that Audi pumps in through the speakers.

I cackled as every nudge of the accelerator rocketed the car forward and threw me back into my seat. I was a kid in a candy store, and that candy store was hurtling down the freeway at breakneck speeds.

Audi RS E-Tron GT
2022 Audi RS E-Tron GT.

By the halfway point of my drive, I was feeling reasonably at home in the RS E-Tron GT. I switched it from “Comfort” mode to “Dynamic” – Audi’s name for a sporty setting – and began pushing the car harder, taking turns a bit faster. My hands, balled up in a sweaty death grip for much of the drive, relaxed a bit (but remained sweaty) as I got more comfortable.

The acceleration, as alien and utterly ridiculous as it was, seemed almost manageable after a time because it was predictable and consistent. And the all-wheel-drive E-Tron GT felt planted and grippy carving around the Hudson Valley’s twisty mountain roads, giving me the confidence to stomp the accelerator where appropriate.

Slowing down to take a tight turn was never an issue thanks to the car’s solid brakes and regenerative-braking system, a common feature in EVs. In an EV or hybrid, regenerative braking starts slowing the car down as soon as your foot is off the accelerator to capture energy and feed it back to the battery as a form of charging.

Audi RS E-Tron GT
2022 Audi RS E-Tron GT.

But I didn’t need to drive all that fast to have an absolute blast in the E-Tron GT. The instant, always-available torque that’s present in most EVs – but is dialed up many, many notches in the Audi – meant I had loads of fun putting my foot down at nearly any speed. I’m told that’s helped by the sedan’s two-speed transmission, something you can’t find in any other current EV aside from the Taycan.

When I did want to open it up, the E-Tron GT’s head-up display, which projects your speed onto the windshield in front of you, proved mighty useful. Given the car’s ability to go from mildly speeding to full-on reckless endangerment in a matter of seconds, being able to check my speed without looking away from the road was a welcome feature.

Audi RS E-Tron GT
2022 Audi RS E-Tron GT.

As my drive came to a close, I was less concerned about smashing the six-figure luxury tourer to bits and more bummed out that I, a mere scribe, will likely never, ever own one. But electric cars are getting cheaper fast, and driving the E-Tron GT helped me understand firsthand why some of their owners are so excited about making the switch from dinosaur goo to battery power.

Even considering the troubles of charging and taking long trips, the appeal of a quick EV that spices up a morning commute or grocery run is undeniable – if you appreciate that sort of thing. And, from a more practical perspective, having enough electric torque on tap to overtake a truck or a weaving driver at a moment’s notice is nice too. Those advantages, plus a more sustainable power source, make EVs all the more attractive.

Audi RS E-Tron GT
2022 Audi RS E-Tron GT.

But for now, I’ll make do with my bike, my dusty old station wagon, and hopefully the occasional afternoon with something a bit more exciting. And if I do end up in a viral YouTube clip someday, I only ask one thing of you:

Please hire me.

Read the original article on Business Insider

The $120,000 Audi RS 6 Avant wagon has some of the fanciest light features of any car – check them all out

2021 Audi RS 6 Avant.KL_59
Let there be light.

  • The 2021 RS 6 Avant I tested recently did cool light tricks when you locked or unlocked it.
  • Inside, it even had futuristic, Tron-like cabin illumination.
  • The best part was that the seat belt buckles lit up so you never had to find them by touch alone.
  • Visit the Business section of Insider for more stories.

There’s always been something about Audis and LEDs.

Audi was among the first – if not the first – automakers to adopt light-emitting diode, or LED, daytime running lights. They debuted in 2004 on the Audi A8 W12 sedan as five LEDs in each headlight. 

The look quickly trickled through the rest of Audi’s lineup after that. Soon, everything from the cheaper A4s up had the scintillating detail – a sparkly, checkmark-shaped strip of LEDs flanking the signature four rings. Nothing like it had ever been seen before and, for a while, you could pick out an Audi heading toward you from afar just based on that pattern of LEDs.

In 2009, the Audi R8 V10 became the first car fitted exclusively with LEDs. Its headlights, turn signals, and daytime running lights all used the technology, which Audi claimed reduced CO2 emissions and was more efficient than the widely used halogen light bulbs. 

It’s now 2021 and nearly everything on the road uses LEDs of some kind, but Audi’s still found a way to distinguish itself. Recently, I tested out a 2021 RS 6 Avant – read the review here! – and stumbled across a neat little light show it puts on when you lock or unlock it. For your viewing pleasure and convenience, I have GIFed the experience below.

2021 Audi RS 6 Avant.
Look at this light show!

When you unlock the car, the front daytime running lights light up in sequence, almost like a welcome greeting. When you lock the car, the rear lights fade out in sequence, like a curtain closing after a show. 

As far as I can tell, this choice was purely an aesthetic one. It certainly doesn’t make the car drive any faster or better. It just gave me, the driver, some small delight in seeing it. There doesn’t seem to be any other reason to include such a feature. 

(And before you email me to yell at me that this is old news and I should get with the program: The internet isn’t all about you. Not everyone knows this about Audis.)

But that’s not all! I invite you to check out two more things.

First, the RS 6 Avant’s door sills light up in the dark and the car projects “Audi Sport” onto the ground, lest you forget what sort of vehicle you have.

2021 Audi RS 6 Avant.KL_95
Like a giant, light-up name tag.

Second, and more practically, the RS 6 Avant’s interior lighting includes seat-belt buckle illumination!

The wagon seats five, so five buckles are encased in a ring of light for you to locate more easily. Anyone who has felt around in the dark for their buckle no longer has to if they’re riding in one of these.

2021 Audi RS 6 Avant.
Strong Tron vibes here.

The rest of the cabin lighting gives off a very futuristic, Tron-like aesthetic. If you looked at the interior during the day, you’d see that the light fits perfectly with the minimalist design. 

But those seat-belt buckle indicator lights. That’s some real MVP stuff right there.

Read the original article on Business Insider

The $120,000 Audi RS 6 Avant has some of the fanciest light features on the market – check them all out

2021 Audi RS 6 Avant.KL_59
Let there be light.

  • The 2021 RS 6 Avant I tested recently did cool light tricks when you locked or unlocked it.
  • Inside, it even had futuristic, Tron-like cabin illumination.
  • The best part was that the seat belt buckles lit up so you never had to find them by touch alone.
  • Visit the Business section of Insider for more stories.

There’s always been something about Audis and LEDs.

Audi was among the first – if not the first – automakers to adopt light-emitting diode, or LED, daytime running lights. They debuted in 2004 on the Audi A8 W12 sedan as five LEDs in each headlight. 

The look quickly trickled through the rest of Audi’s lineup after that. Soon, everything from the cheaper A4s up had the scintillating detail – a sparkly, checkmark-shaped strip of LEDs flanking the signature four rings. Nothing like it had ever been seen before and, for a while, you could pick out an Audi heading toward you from afar just based on that pattern of LEDs.

In 2009, the Audi R8 V10 became the first car fitted exclusively with LEDs. Its headlights, turn signals, and daytime running lights all used the technology, which Audi claimed reduced CO2 emissions and was more efficient than the widely used halogen light bulbs. 

It’s now 2021 and nearly everything on the road uses LEDs of some kind, but Audi’s still found a way to distinguish itself. Recently, I tested out a 2021 RS 6 Avant – read the review here! – and stumbled across a neat little light show it puts on when you lock or unlock it. For your viewing pleasure and convenience, I have GIFed the experience below.

2021 Audi RS 6 Avant.
Look at this light show!

When you unlock the car, the front daytime running lights light up in sequence, almost like a welcome greeting. When you lock the car, the rear lights fade out in sequence, like a curtain closing after a show. 

As far as I can tell, this choice was purely an aesthetic one. It certainly doesn’t make the car drive any faster or better. It just gave me, the driver, some small delight in seeing it. There doesn’t seem to be any other reason to include such a feature. 

(And before you email me to yell at me that this is old news and I should get with the program: The internet isn’t all about you. Not everyone knows this about Audis.)

But that’s not all! I invite you to check out two more things.

First, the RS 6 Avant’s door sills light up in the dark and the car projects “Audi Sport” onto the ground, lest you forget what sort of vehicle you have.

2021 Audi RS 6 Avant.KL_95
Like a giant, light-up name tag.

Second, and more practically, the RS 6 Avant’s interior lighting includes seat-belt buckle illumination!

The wagon seats five, so five buckles are encased in a ring of light for you to locate more easily. Anyone who has felt around in the dark for their buckle no longer has to if they’re riding in one of these.

2021 Audi RS 6 Avant.
Strong Tron vibes here.

The rest of the cabin lighting gives off a very futuristic, Tron-like aesthetic. If you looked at the interior during the day, you’d see that the light fits perfectly with the minimalist design. 

But those seat-belt buckle indicator lights. That’s some real MVP stuff right there.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Audi debuted its electric super sedan to take on the Tesla Model S – check out the $100,000 E-Tron GT

Audi E-Tron GT
Audi E-Tron GT

  • Audi unveiled the E-Tron GT, its $100,000 flagship electric sedan. 
  • Its sportiest version, the $140,000 RS, claims 590 horsepower and a 0-60-mph time of 3.1 seconds. 
  • The E-Tron GT hits US dealerships this summer. 
  • Visit the Business section of Insider for more stories.

Audi took the wraps off of the E-Tron GT, a high-end sport sedan that’s a sibling to the Porsche Taycan and takes aim at the Tesla Model S.

The E-Tron GT, revealed through a virtual event Tuesday, will hit US dealerships this summer, Audi says. It will start at just shy of $100,000 for the base model, with another trim level retailing for around $107,000.

The top-of-the-line, high-performance RS model will cost $139,900, almost exactly the same price as Tesla’s sportiest sedan, the Model S Plaid Plus. 

Audi E-Tron GT
Audi E-Tron GT

Although the E-Tron GT doesn’t promise quite the same extreme performance as the Plaid Plus, it’s certainly not lacking on that front. It shares its underpinnings with the Porsche Taycan, as both brands fall under the Volkswagen umbrella. 

Powered by two motors – one at each axle – the standard model puts out a combined 469 horsepower and 464 lb-ft of torque, by Audi’s estimation. The company says it can hit 60 mph in 3.9 seconds, on its way to a top speed of 152 mph. 

The RS version steps things up a notch with a more powerful rear motor that boosts total output to 590 horsepower and 612 lb-ft of torque. The RS goes from 0-60 in 3.1 seconds and has a top speed of 155 mph, Audi claims. The RS accelerates quicker than the V10-powered Audi R8 sports car, the company notes. 

Audi E-Tron GT
Audi E-Tron GT

As for range, Audi says the E-Tron GT can travel 238 miles on a charge, while the RS model can go 232 miles. Using DC fast charging, the car can add 62.1 miles of range in five minutes or recharge from 5% to 80% battery in a little over 22 minutes, according to Audi. Tesla, for comparison, doesn’t sell a Model S with less than 390 miles of estimated range. 

Read more: A wave of consolidation is coming for the electric-vehicle startup game in 2021, an industry insider says

The E-Tron GT gets a leather-free interior as standard, featuring recycled and synthetic materials instead – although buyers can add leather as an option. It comes equipped with a 12.3-inch display for the instrument cluster and a 10.1-inch main touchscreen, a bit more restrained than Tesla’s 17-inch center screen. 

Audi E-Tron GT
Audi E-Tron GT

Notable options include four-wheel steering, upgraded headlights, a head-up display, massaging seats, adaptive air suspension, and a carbon-fiber roof for the RS model. 

Audi plans to have 30% of its US lineup be either fully electric or hybrid by 2025. The brand has made headway on that front by launching the E-Tron and E-Tron Sportback crossovers – and it’s planning to roll out another battery-powered crossover, theQ4 E-Tron, later this year. 

Read the original article on Business Insider