Audi E4 (Audi A4 e-tron) Electric to rival the Tesla Model 3 [Update]

  • Will likely be available in Sedan and Avant versions with softened edges
  • Tesla Model 3, global BMW 3 Series EV & Mercedes C-Class Electric are the chief rivals
  • Could deliver an EPA-est. range of up to around 300 miles & support 270 kW DC charging
  • Expected to arrive in 2026; likely to be manufactured in Germany

Update: ‘Combustion-powered Audi A4 reportedly to take on the ‘A5’ branding’ section added.

Audi plans to build a comprehensive EV line-up In the coming years and cater to a range of premium segments, from an Audi E3 (Audi A3 e-tron) to an Audi R8 successor. A key launch will reportedly be a mid-size electric sedan, possibly called Audi E4 or Audi A4 e-tron.

Audi electric car launches in all core segments by 2027

Oliver Hoffmann, BoM member responsible for Technical Development, Audi, has told Top Gear that Audi plans to sell electric cars in all its main segments by 2027, TG reported on September 30, 2022. The A4 ranked fourth on the company’s global sales charts in 2021, with 215,227 units delivered from three models (Sedan, Avant, and allroad quattro).

Previously, Hoffmann told Auto Express that the A4’s electric alternative would be based on a dedicated electric vehicle platform. He added that Audi had also considered a multi-energy (ICE-BEV) architecture, but it comes with compromise.

PPE Platform

PPE battery system
The PPE can accommodate a 100 kWh battery which can offer up to 435 miles of range (WLTP). Image: Audi

Meanwhile, Autocar reported in December 2021 that the next-gen Audi A4 would include a pure-electric version. Audi would use the Premium Platform Combustion (PPC) for mild-hybrid and plug-in hybrid variants and the Premium Platform Electric (PPE), co-developed with Porsche, for the Audi E4 or Audi A4 e-tron.

The A6 e-tron concept made its debut at the 2021 Shanghai Auto Show, where it was announced that the premium sedan would be based on the new PPE architecture. Autocar suggests that the same would underpin the Audi E4, albeit with a shorter wheelbase and narrower tracks. PPE platform-based EVs can accommodate a battery with up to 100 kWh capacity and deliver a WLTP range of up to 435 miles. Thanks to an 800-volt system voltage, they can accept DC fast-charging at up to 270 kW.

The PPE would debut on the Audi Q6 e-tron or the Porsche Macan EV, both of which will go on sale in 2024, followed by the A6 e-tron (Audi E6) and A6 e-tron Avant. Audi and Porsche plan to sell 7 million electric cars based on the PPE platform by 2030.

Design & Features

Audi A4 e-tron rendering
The Audi E4 may have a conventional sedan body, as per an Autocar report. Pictured is TopElectricSUV’s rendering of the Audi electric sedan.

Initially, we expected the Audi E4 to have an A5 Sportback-style five-door configuration with a liftgate-style rear. However, in a report published on July 26, 2022, Autocar said that the A4 e-tron (E4) would have styling similar to the gasoline-powered A4.

Based on the British publication’s speculation, our exclusive rendering (pictured above) shows the A4’s future version as a conventional four-door model powered by batteries. It borrows design cues from the A6 e-tron concept, as evident with the large enclosed Singleframe grille’s shape and pattern. The split headlights consist of slim and flat position lights and discreetly placed low and high beams on the bottom, right above the side air inlets. They are similar to the headlights on the prototypes of the E6.

In addition, the Audi A4 Electric’s key features may include adaptive air suspension, Level 2 autonomous driving, and contactless in-car payments for charging, parking, drive-through food orders, and tolls.

Audi E4 Avant/allroad quattro (Electric)

Audi A4 allroad quattro front three quarter
An Audi E4 Avant (Electric) could be in the pipeline as well, considering that Audi is strong with estates. Image: Audi

While station wagons are losing the battle to SUVs, Audi remains committed to the traditional body style. Hoffmann told TG that “Audi stands for Avant and Avant for Audi,” indicating that station wagons have a place at Audi in the EV era. The company sells three station wagons in the U.S., namely A4 allroad quattro, A6 allroad quattro, and RS 6 Avant, and several more in other markets. It will likely launch an E4 Avant (A4 Avant e-tron) soon after the sedan version, so as to future-proof the lineup.

Audi E4 Specifications

Audi A4 Ingolstadt production
The Audi A4 rolls out of the Ingolstadt plant; reports suggest the A4 e-tron will also be manufactured here. Image: Audi

Customers would have the option to choose from RWD single-motor variants to dual-motor Quattro AWD variants. An Audi RS 4 e-tron with up to 496 bhp and 590 lb-ft is expected to top the range. There’s no word on the battery capacity and range, although we know the PPE’s capabilities. Audi may target a range of 435 miles (700 km) on the A6 e-tron on the WLTP cycle. Expect the E4 to come with around 373 miles (600 km), given that its comparatively shorter wheelbase would accommodate a slightly smaller battery. With 270 kW DC fast-charging, 300 km of range is achievable in 10 min, and 5-80% in under 25 min.


Audi makes the gasoline-powered A4 at its German factories in Ingolstadt and Neckarsulm. The company has already confirmed it will build the pure-electric A4 e-tron at the Ingolstadt plant, and in the future, it may announce the electric sedan’s manufacturing at Neckarsulm as well.

As the main base for production of the electric successors to the Audi A3 and the Audi A4, according to (Gerd) Walker, Ingolstadt will become the blueprint for the transformation.

Audi press announcement on July 26, 2022. Gerd Walker is the Audi Board Member for Production and Logistics.

In an announcement on December 20, 2022, Audi hinted it can build EVs, presumably including the A4 e-tron, on the same line at the Ingolstadt plant as the combustion-powered A4 (and A5). The company was elaborating on one of Walker’s comments on transitioning to EVs, when it said:

The new Audi Q6 e-tron, for example, will initially be made in Ingolstadt on the same line as the Audi A4 and A5. The electric models will then gradually replace the combustion cars on the lines.

Audi press release (December 20, 2022)

Towards the end of the decade, the Audi Neckarsulm plant will start making the second generation Audi A6 e-tron. However, the Works Council is demanding more electric models, and they want them sooner:

We urgently need a successor to the Audi A8 and another electric vehicle (in addition to the Audi A8 electric successor) to fill the gap until the Audi A6 e-tron is launched. We cannot stand by and watch others bring the future onto the streets. We have to be part of it!

Works Council Chairman Rainer Schirmer at the Neckarsulm Works Meeting 2022 on December 1, 2022 (translated from German)

Audi A4 sales in the U.S.

The Audi A4 was the second best-selling Audi sedan in the U.S. between January and December 2022, with 15,239 units, just shy of the A5, which brought in 18,349 units. However, compared to January-December 2021 (16,263 units), A4 sales were down by 6%, in a year that challenged automakers with supply chain disruptions.

Combustion-powered Audi A4 reportedly to take on the ‘A5’ branding

According to an Auto Express report dated March 6, 2023, the incoming gas-powered A4 range will be renamed as the ‘A5’ while the pure-electric model is to be known as ‘A4 e-tron.’ Audi EVs will have even-numbered titles while ICE models will use odd-numbered nomenclatures, the British publication reported.

TopElectricSUV says

Audi A4 rear three quarter
To us, it looks like the combustion model and an electric model of the A4, riding on unique platforms, will co-exist at least until the end of the decade. Image: Audi

If Audi gets the E4 right, it could become one of its best-selling EVs in the U.S. For it to stand out from the gas-powered model, Audi E4 will have to be an electric mid-size sedan with more advanced technologies, more space, and higher comfort than the A4. It might not offer Tesla Model 3 levels of range or performance, but it will likely beat the best-seller on luxury features, quality, and refinement.

Audi A4 e-tron/Audi A4 Electric FAQs

What is the release date of the Audi A4 e-tron?

The Audi E4 will reportedly debut in 2026.

Which are the core competitors to the Audi E4?

What is the expected price of the Audi A4 e-tron?

Expect the Audi A4 e-tron to start at around USD 50,000.

Featured image: TopElectricSUV’s render of the Audi E4 (A4 e-tron).