Audi Q6 e-tron is first model in the automaker’s new generation of battery electric vehicles

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The all-new Q6 e-tron, which slots between the Q4 and Q8 in the Audi electric SUV lineup, introduces a new dedicated BEV platform, a new electronic architecture and a new design philosophy. 

The Premium Platform Electric (PPE) which underpins the Q6 was developed with Porsche, which uses it for the all-electric second-generation Macan. 

The PPE underpinning the Q6 has been engineered from the ground up to integrate the 800-volt architecture, dual electric motors and battery energy management system in a cohesive and efficient manner. The PPE is also flexible enough to be repurposed for both “high-floor” (i.e. SUV such as the next-gen Q8) and “low-floor” (i.e. sedan such as the upcoming new-age A6) models. 

The high-voltage battery that powers the Q6 motors has an energy capacity of 100 kWh, of which 94.9 kWh is useable. It can be charged up at a maximum rate of 270 kW, which can bring the battery level from 10 to 80 percent in 21 minutes at a suitable fast-charging station. Ten minutes of recharging is good for up to 255 kilometres of driving range. The maximum range of the Q6 is over 600 kilometres.

The newer technology of the Q6 battery pack makes it lighter, less complicated, and easier to install than the Q8 battery pack. The newer tech also benefits the Q6 electric motors - 20 percent lighter than the older Q8 motors and requiring 30 percent less installation space, while cutting drag losses by 50 percent and improving the overall power-to-weight ratio by 60 percent. 

In all-wheel-drive performance terms, the Q6 produces 285 kW (382 bhp) and does the 0-100km/h sprint in 5.9 seconds, while the more powerful SQ6 produces 380 kW (510 bhp) and does the century sprint in 4.3 seconds with launch control activated.

Editors%2 Fimages%2 F1710980712598 A241381 Large FotorAudi's Digital Stage dashboard design for Q6/SQ6 e-tron is state-of-the-art.

The brain of the Q6 is E3 (end-to-end electronic architecture) version 1.2, which has five powerful computers to control all vehicle functions, including infotainment, driving-related systems and safety features. The software is updatable/upgradable, so it can “refresh” the Q6 every now and again for improved performance or enhanced capabilities - whether complimentary or chargeable.

The Q6’s infotainment system is built on Audi’s first application of Android Automotive OS, which is ready to plug-and-play into the digital/social world of the driver and passengers. 

Everything from Audi’s suite of market-specific connected services to popular third-party apps is integrated with the Q6 MMI (Multi Media Interface) for easy operation. Boosting the onboard entertainment factor is an optional Bang & Olufsen Premium sound system with 830 watts of hi-fi output and 22 loudspeakers, including four embedded in the front headrests - perfect for some headbanging to heavy metal.  

Headlining the Q6 dashboard design is Digital Stage, which lets the driver take centre stage in the car’s infotainment arena, with the front passenger also enjoying some of the show. 

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The slim, curved and free-standing Audi MMI panoramic display is oriented towards the driver, who will view the rich yet tidy content in crystal-clear OLED glory on the 14.5-inch touchscreen and might see that the contours are inspired by Audi’s signature singleframe grille. 

The 11.9-inch virtual instrument cluster and the newfangled augmented reality head-up display provide crucial driving information, while the 10.9-inch display above the glovebox provides personal infotainment options for the front passenger, with an Active Privacy mode to prevent the secondary display from distracting the driver while driving.  

Another gadget in the Q6 is Audi Assistant, which has its own avatar in the central touch display. Supported by artificial intelligence, the voice-controlled digital aid understands more than 800 voice commands and is able to self-learn from user behaviour to become better at making proactive suggestions - without being creepy or anything.

Editors%2 Fimages%2 F1710981604136 A241198 Large FotorOLED tail-lights of Q6 are a vivid light show with safety benefits.

Audi describes the Q6 exterior as sporty, progressive and perfectly proportioned, which is what customers and observers expect, having already seen the Q8. The range-topping SQ6 is equipped with the German automaker's usual S-for-sporty touches. 

The most impressive exterior aspect of the Q6 is its active digital light signature, said to be a first in the automotive world. The tail-lights utilise six OLED panels with 360 segments, while the Matrix LED headlights have 12 light segments, with the whole digital “light show” driven by a special algorithm. 

Q6 owners can even choose from up to eight different digital light signatures, but more useful is how the rear lights can communicate with other motorists - for instance, by displaying a contextual warning symbol to alert them about a traffic incident, or lighting up to warn drivers/bikers/cyclists approaching the stationary Q6 from the back that someone is getting out of the car.

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Read More: mReview: Audi Q8 e-tron 55 & Q8 Sportback e-tron 55 – All Business

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