Audi E-tron Sportback long-term test: report 7

Can you live with a fully electric car if you can't charge at home? We're finding out with the help of the Audi E-tron Sportback...

LT Audi E-tron Sportback exiting car park

The car Audi E-tron Sportback 55 quattro 96kWh S line Run by Steve Huntingford, editor

Why it's here We want to see if Audi's electric coupé SUV feels worthy of its £80k price tag and fits into everyday life

Needs to Deliver a wow factor befitting its price, and not be compromised by its mode of propulsion or sleek looks

Mileage 3300 List price £80,675 Target Price £76,677 Price as tested £84,795 Test range 230 miles Official range 247 miles

5 October 2021 – Caution, wide vehicle

A former editor of mine used to say “space is luxury”, and I can see where he was coming from.

Whether it’s the extra leg room that you get in business class, or the size of the houses the rich and famous live in, the trappings of a luxurious lifestyle are generally anything but poky. And this also extends to cars.

LT Audi E-tron Sportback - child stretching out in the front

No, models that offer a lot of space aren’t automatically luxurious; if they were, van-based people carriers would be among the most desirable vehicles on the road. However, there’s a reason why the likes of Bentley and Rolls-Royce don’t make small hatchbacks.

Similarly, there are plenty of things that contribute to the luxurious feel of my Audi E-tron Sportback, from the quality of the materials to how hushed it is at a cruise. But the way it lets those in the back stretch out, while seating the driver and front passenger so far apart that there’s zero chance of them fighting over armrest space, definitely plays its part.

The downside is that the E-tron Sportback is a big car on the outside, too, with its width, in particular, causing issues at times.

LT Audi E-tron Sportback parking camera

Tight multi-storey car parks have to be tackled with caution to avoid kerbing the alloy wheels; certain parking spaces are off limits because I just won’t be able to get the door open; and if the driver of the car in front is waiting to turn right across traffic, I often have to sit and wait with them, even if they’ve tried to be considerate and leave space to pass on the left.

Yes, I know, these are all first world problems. But I’d urge anyone buying an E-tron Sportback to tick the box for the £1895 Comfort & Sound Pack, because this includes a 360-degree camera that often feels like a necessity rather than a luxury when manoeuvring.

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