With the era of EVs slowly taking place, most prominent automakers are keen on coming out with their own EVs and making them as competitive as they can. High-end premium brands like Mercedes, Audi, BMW, Jaguar, and many others are hoping to flood the premium EV segment while brands like Hyundai, Kia, Mazda, and Honda are trying to go for the affordable car segment.
However, these latest EVs are known to blur the lines between premium and “affordable” because EV technology is just way too fresh and many premium automakers simply don’t have the necessary experience and money to make premium products that truly do feel more premium than many models from cheaper brands.
This is pretty much the story here with the Hyundai Ioniq 5 and the Audi Q4 E Tron as the cheaper EV tries to compete with the more expensive EV. So, Hyundai Ioniq 5 vs Audi Q4 E Tron – Which is better? We’d say that this comparison isn’t as logical as you’d expect it to be. Both come with two battery sizes with similar power.
Design is up to personal taste and the Audi does follow its well-known tech-driven design language while the Hyundai Ioniq 5 takes a completely separate step from the rest of the Hyundai family. Practicality is a one-sided story while reliability is also one-sided.
Hyundai Ioniq 5
The starting price of the Hyundai Ioniq 5 is around $42,000 which is below what you’d pay for a premium EV. You can choose between a smaller 58kWh battery that offers either 170hp or 235hp depending on if you want rear-wheel-drive or AWD. The other choice is the larger 78kWh battery wither either 217hp or 306hp depending on if you want RWD or AWD.
The maximum range you can get from the Ioniq 5 is around 303 miles while fast DC charging is capped at 350kW, but many owners state that the “real-world” charging rate is around 230kW. This should, in theory, be enough to recharge the Ioniq 5 from 0% to 80% in just 18 minutes.
Design-wise, the Ioniq 5 looks completely different from all other Hyundai models out there, and most people tend to agree that the Ioniq 5 looks really good. The interior is also well-appointed as the Ioniq 5 gets everything you want. Reliability is 72/100 from J.D. Power which makes it good, but not the best.
Practicality is excellent for the segment as the Ioniq 5 offers a long wheelbase which, in turn, offers lots of seating space. Visibility is really good and the trunk space is really large.
Audi Q4 E Tron
The Audi Q4 E Tron starts at $54,000 which is quite of a price hike when compared to the Ioniq 5. This price will get you the 55kW model with 170hp. If you want something more, you will have to upgrade to the 82kWh battery which offers either 204hp, 265hp, or 299hp max. The Q4 E Tron should be able to do around 320 miles at a full charge which is slightly better than the Ioniq 5.
When it comes to charging speeds, the Q4 E Tron can withstand charging speeds up to 125kW while most models can only do 100kW. This means that 0-80% takes almost 40 minutes which is a lot worse when compared to the Ioniq 5. The Q4 does look futuristic and really attractive as is the case with all Audi models.
You can see that the Q4 shares its underpinnings with its cheaper brother, the VW .ID4. The interior is nicely laid out and futuristic, but a bit too plasticky for an Audi. J.D. Power hasn’t rated the Q4 E Tron for reliability just yet, but it seems like the Q4 E Tron is a fairly problematic car at most times. Practicality is okay, but the Q4 E Tron isn’t the best in anything.
Verdict – The Hyundai Ioniq 5 is better
Let’s face it, the Audi Q4 E Tron is just a re-faced version of the $15,000 cheaper VW .ID4, and the .ID4 can’t match the Ioniq 5 anyway. The Q4 E Tron is much worse when it comes to the maximum charging speeds, it is much worse when it comes to pricing, and it is much worse when it comes to practicality and interior space.
Audi needs to rethink their smaller EV offerings because they aren’t competitive at all. A 100kW max charging speed for a $50,000+ car is ludicrous. It is rather obvious that Audi tries to be competitive at the higher end of the market with the E Tron GT, but models such as these can only ruin Audi’s reputation as a technology-driven company.
Is the Hyundai Ioniq 5 safer than the Audi Q4 E Tron?
When it comes to safety, we can easily say that both of these are more than good enough. Audi is a brand known for making extremely safe cars and Hyundai is no different. As such, you can expect a true 5-star rated performance in an event of a crash.
When it comes to advanced active safety systems, Audi wants you to pay a lot of money for some features that ought to be standard while the Ioniq 5 can have issues with certain safety systems, especially when it comes to how aggressive and assertive the lane keep assist can get.
Is the Hyundai Ioniq 5 a better buy than the Audi Q4 E Tron?
Yes, it is. For a price of an entry-level Q4 E Tron, you can get a thoroughly optioned-out Ioniq 5 that will always feel like a superior car. This is also reflected in used car values because the Ioniq 5 depreciates much slower when compared to the Q4 E Tron.
Is the Hyundai Ioniq 5 more efficient than the Audi Q4 E Tron?
Hyundai says that the Ioniq 5 will return 127MPGe in the city and 94MPGe on the highway. Audi says that the Q4 E TRON is good for 78MPGe in the city and 77MPGe on the highway which is much worse than the Ioniq 5. This only further reiterates that the Ioniq 5 is a much better package overall.