'Wonderful and unique' new entry-level Audi EV due in 2027

Audi is accelerating work on a new entry-level EV that will serve as an electric equivalent to the A3 and Q3 – with boss Gernot Döllner claiming it will be a “wonderful, unique, independent concept”.

The compact model is tipped to arrive in 2027, with Döllner saying it will be the product of an accelerated development time of around three years as the German firm bids to compete against fast-moving Chinese rivals.

Following the demise of the A1 supermini and Q2 crossover, the A3 hatchback and Q3 SUV will be the smallest cars in Audi’s ICE range. The A3 has just been refreshed and a new version of the Q3 is due soon.

Döllner refused to give details of the new EV beyond it being an “additional electric model below the Q4 E-tron” but did say “it will be a wonderful, unique independent vehicle concept, produced in Ingolstadt, and it will be something we can all look forward to”.

Given the popularity of SUVs, the entry-level EV could take the form of a high-riding crossover rather than a conventional hatchback, serving as a sibling model to the ICE Q3. 

At last year’s Munich motor show, then Audi technical chief Oliver Hoffman hinted that the new model would use the Volkswagen Group’s MEB EV platform (which underpins the Q4 E-tron) rather than the higher-end PPE architecture Audi has just launched. That platform is intended for bigger cars, such as the new Audi Q6 E-tron SUV.

Döllner didn’t rule out MEB as the basis but insisted that the “final decision on which platform we will use has not been taken”.

Döllner did rule out an EV to succeed the A1, saying: “This is not a four-metre car. I’m not that dogmatic. We won’t have a successor for the A1 or Q2, not a direct successor. But with the model below [the] Q4 in the [A3] segment, that will be definitely our entry-level car.”

While Döllner gave no indication what name the new EV could take, Audi has recently switched its model number strategy so that even numbers are used for electric cars and odd numbers are used for ICE cars.

That suggests the future entry-level EV is likely to be called the A2 E-tron or Q2 E-tron, even through it would bear no relation to the previous models with those names.

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