The Audi e-tron was the very first Audi electric SUV released back in 2018 while the Audi Q4 e-tron is the latest Audi electric SUV. This means that the e-tron was the one to break the ice when it comes to mainstream Audi electric cars and many of the learnings that came with the e-tron are not present in the Q4.
This is an interesting matchup because the standard e-tron is larger in all dimensions, it is more powerful, has higher-end interior materials, is more luxurious, and is a lot more spacious as well. The Q4 gets newer technology, a more contemporary design inside and out, and a more attainable price tag.
The e-tron simply feels like a higher quality product even though it is an older car. Even low spec versions of the e-tron feel more upmarket than a Q4. When the newly redesigned e-tron comes out in a month or two, the Q4 will lose all of its benefits over the e-tron except for the price.
All in all, there are quite a few differences between the two and we are going to compare these in a number of factors. Either way, they are both impressive EVs and they do deserve their place on the market, but the biggest difference between the two is quality.
Audi e-tron VS Audi Q4 e-tron – Powertrain
The big e-tron offers two different battery options, a smaller 71.2kWh battery or a larger 95kWh battery with varying power outputs between 313hp and 503hp. The big e-tron can do between 186 miles and 255 miles on a full charge which is not necessarily a good number for a car with a 95kWh battery. Either way, Audi says that the upcoming e-tron is going to offer upwards of 350 miles.
The smaller Q4 e-tron comes with two battery sizes as well, a 55kWh battery or an 82kWh with power outputs varying between 170hp and 300hp. The entry-level 55kWh e-tron can do 212 miles while the 82kWh battery Q4 can do about 323 miles which is a lot more than the big e-tron even though the battery is much smaller.
The e-tron can be fully recharged in about 30-45 minutes through a 150kW charger depending on the battery size you go for while the smaller Q4 can be recharged through a 100kW charger in about 30-40 minutes which means that these two are similar, but the Q4 charges slightly faster with a 150kW charger.
Audi e-tron VS Audi Q4 e-tron – Design and chassis
We have already mentioned that the standard e-tron is larger in every dimension and it definitely looks and feels like a more substantial car behind the wheel. It looks a bit less futuristic but it does look cool, especially in Sportback form. The interior of the big e-tron is better than in the Q4, both in regards to quality and build quality.
The smaller Q4 looks more futuristic and it is obvious it is a newer car. It also comes in either SUV or Sportback form, but the interior is nowhere near as well built nor luxurious as in the big e-tron. The big e-tron also comes with air suspension which makes it more comfortable while the Q4 feels a bit more ordinary.
Audi e-tron VS Audi Q4 e-tron – Reliability
When it comes to reliability, we need to emphasize that early e-tron models are some of the most problematic EVs on the market, but that the newer ones are comparably better. The upcoming e-tron refresh is likely going to iron out even more issues when it finally arrives.
It is still too early to tell if the Q4 is a reliable car or not as it only came out a year ago. It does not suffer from any serious issues until this point, but you can definitely feel the lack of quality the Q4 represents as opposed to the big e-tron which feels more substantial and better built in every way.
Audi e-tron VS Audi Q4 e-tron – Value and practicality
The e-tron starting price is about $20,000 higher than the Q4 e-tron which costs around $45,000. However, a Q4 with a larger battery pack, and a fully kitted-out interior is near on identical to the regular e-tron. The Q4 is the more usable car and you get more value if you are mileage anxious, but if you want a better experience overall, the e-tron offers better value.
Practicality-wise, the e-tron takes it without a shadow of a doubt because it offers more space in every regard. It is longer, wider, taller, and it offers a larger trunk space. The Q4 is decent, but not on the level of the big e-tron.
Why should I buy the Audi Q4 e-tron over the Audi e-tron SUV?
You should consider buying the Q4 e-tron over the big e-tron SUV because it is about $20,000 cheaper to begin with which can leave you with enough money to buy a Q4 with a larger battery pack which absolutely destroys the big e-tron when it comes to mileage. The Q4 offers a lot more value if you are someone who does big miles.
You should also consider the Q4 if you want the very latest Audi technology and a car that has just came out. The Q4 is likely the more futureproofed car out of the two because the refreshed e-tron is still not out yet.
Why should I buy the big Audi e-tron SUV over the Audi Q4 e-tron?
You should consider buying the big e-tron SUV over the Q4 e-tron if you want a car that is more luxurious, more spacious, packed with high-quality materials and one that feels more special in every way. The big e-tron might not be as efficient as the Q4, but it actually feels like a true luxury SUV should after three years on the market while the brand new Q4 does not.
The e-tron is faster, more powerful, and more desirable, and when the refreshed e-tron comes out the Q4 will not be able to compete with the big e-tron in regards to technology, efficiency, or futureproofing.
Are Audi electric SUVs any good?
Audi is a well-known luxury brand that continuously offers high-end luxury SUVs, but Audi has not yet made an electric SUV that can truly rival the BMW IX. As such, Audi does not make the best electric SUVs on the market, but the SUVs they do offer are certainly good cars.