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Audi Q6 e-tron 2025 review

  • DrivetrainAWD dual-motor
  • Battery capacity100kWh
  • Battery typeLithium-ion
  • Electric range598-625km (WLTP)
  • Plug TypeType 2
  • DC charge rate270kW
  • AC charge rate11kW
  • Electric motor output285kW (Q6) / 380kW (SQ6)
  • Electric efficiency17.0-19.6kWh/100km
Complete Guide to Audi Q6

This is the future… of Audi, at least. It’s not so much the Q6 e-tron itself, but what’s under it. 

The 'Premium Platform Electric' which it rides on will underpin future Audi models as well as others from Porsche, which co-developed it.

The Q6 e-tron is the first production model to run on the PPE architecture, with a focus on blending dynamics, practicality and importantly driving range. So, we headed to Spain to drive the new Q6 e-tron and find out if the future is bright.

Price and features – Does it represent good value for the price? What features does it come with? 7/10

Australian pricing hasn’t been announced yet, nor have the specifics of features we can expect locally. But it’s pretty impressive stuff judging by the international spec we drove, so a conservative score of 7.0 for now.

Audi has done plenty to refine the newest member of its e-tron family, with a new structural platform and digital architecture running the show underneath.

A visually obvious step-up in terms of tech comes in the form of Audi’s ‘active’ digital light signatures and OLED tail-lights, which we’ll come back to in the Design section. A set of 18-inch wheels adorn the Q6 e-tron, while the SQ6 wears 20-inch rims.

Inside, an 11.9-inch 'Virtual Cockpit' for the driver and a main 14.5-inch multimedia screen are standard, with an optional 10.9-inch passenger display. Audi calls this trio of screens the ‘digital stage’, the latter allowing a passenger to watch media without the driver seeing and being distracted. Android Auto and Apple CarPlay are both wirelessly available.

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The operating system in the Q6 e-tron is one of many systems run by the brand's new 'E3 1.2' electronic architecture, which also runs driving functions and comfort features through "five high-performance computers".

An AI-enabled 'Audi Assistant' and augmented reality head-up display aim to make driving easier by streamlining information and tasks. Software can be updated over-the-air (OTA) with third-party apps and features also able to be used within the car’s software.

Interior ambient lighting is dynamic, based on functions and driving behaviour. For example, a bar over the dash glows red under hard braking.

Additionally, a new version of Audi’s ‘phone box’ includes a 15-watt Qi wireless phone charger, or there are four USB-C charging points in the cabin.

Design – Is there anything interesting about its design? 8/10

The Q6 e-tron takes on what the brand calls a new evolution of its electric car design. The closed-off 'singleframe' grille is the key feature for the upright front-end, as is traditional for an Audi, but the headlights and DRLs flanking it are higher and narrower.

Once you see the side of it a little more, the long wheelbase, short overhangs and relatively low-slung roofline makes it look rather sporting for its size. We imagine there will be some family resemblance between it and its Porsche Macan cousin in terms of proportions.

The lights are also a first, Audi claiming they’re the world’s first ‘active digital light signature’. Essentially, a group of six panels in the light cluster change pattern every 10 milliseconds, making the car look like there’s ‘brain activity’ going on, as Audi puts it.

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At the rear, the digital OLED tail-lights are able to change and display warning symbols to other drivers, drawing attention to the Q6 when it may be in a dangerous situation.

The main downside to the exterior design comes in the form of a rather large amount of black trim surrounding the front grille, as well as down the side on the lower portion of the doors. The Q6 and SQ6 don’t need to look so busy.

Inside, design has, in some small areas, drawn a little more importance than practicality, resulting in a rather dynamic looking cabin, especially in trims with contrast stitching as in the SQ6.

Angular geometric shapes scream Audi without doing too much to be different for the sake of being an electric car. Rather, it feels like a civilised Audi that just happens to be electric with no visual or design gimmicks evident. The materials and touch points all seem well thought out and good quality, too.

Practicality – How practical is its space and tech inside? 8/10

Inside, it’s hard not to start with the driver’s 11.9-inch Virtual Cockpit screen and the central 14.5-inch multimedia display housed in a curved glass casing. They’re joined, optionally in Europe, by a 10.9-inch passenger display which Audi’s team at the launch said was increasingly important for markets like China where tech is king, though even in Europe customers are usually interested in ‘more’ when it comes to functionality.

It might seem like too much in the way of interfaces, but when in unfamiliar territory on the launch, it was super useful to have a passenger with a map who was able to add guidance support without the driver being distracted by the central screen.

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That central 14.5-inch multimedia display's interface has a fair bit going on but with time spent getting to know it, it appears to have a relatively quick way to access most of the important information and functions needed without too much distraction while driving.

Frustratingly, while they’re at least always visible, the climate controls are integrated into the central display, meaning no easy dials or buttons for adjusting the interior temperature.

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More tactile individual buttons would be welcome on the steering wheel controls and the driver door panel that accommodates side mirror, seat memory and lighting settings, too, though ergonomic placement of these is sensible and clear.

The seating position and space inside the Q6 e-tron feels on the comfortable, spacious side when it comes to mid-size SUVs. Without having ridden as a passenger in the rear seat, it seems roomy enough for a couple of adults to ride in on a decently long trip from static impressions.

Behind that, there's a decent 526-litre boot, plus up front there's a smaller 64L ‘frunk’.

Under the bonnet – What are the key stats for its motor? 8/10

Both the Audi Q6 e-tron quattro and its faster SQ6 sibling are, as the quattro name suggests, all-wheel drive with an electric motor at the front and on the rear axle.

In the Q6 e-tron quattro, the base all-wheel drive version, the motors make a combined output of 285kW, allowing the Q6 to launch to 100km/h in a claimed 5.9 seconds, decently quick for a mid-size SUV not focused on performance. Top speed is limited to 210km/h for the Q6 e-tron quattro.

The SQ6 comes with some more ‘go’, however, with 380kW allowing a sprint to 100km/h in just 4.3 seconds. Top speed is a governed 230km/h.

Both variants’ motors have the same torque outputs, 275Nm at the front and 580Nm at the rear, though a combined output is not quoted - and it’s not as simple as adding the two figures.

Efficiency – What is its driving range? What is its charging time? 8/10

The Q6 e-tron quattro is claimed to use between 19.6 and 17.0kWh/100km, while the SQ6’s claimed efficiency falls (oddly for a more powerful variant) within that range at 18.4-17.5kWh/100km.

Its lower power output means the Q6 can travel a claimed 625km on a single charge, while the SQ6’s claimed range is only as high as 598km under WLTP testing.

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Both variants use the same 94.9kWh (net) lithium-ion battery, which can be charged at up to 270kW DC fast charging, or 11kW on AC.

Audi claims its 800-volt architecture allows a 10-80 per cent charge in 21 minutes and can add 255km of range in as little as 10 minutes.

Driving – What's it like to drive? 9/10

Straight off the bat, it’s a credit to the Q6 e-tron quattro that getting used to driving on the right-hand side of narrow roads between Bilbao and San Sebastian on Spain's northern coast felt like a fairly easy task.

The car is 1939mm wide, but felt surprisingly manageable on roads built for far smaller, slower vehicles. Steering and suspension come into play here. The Q6 has a new front axle design that places the control arms in front of the suspension arms, which, according to the engineers not only allows better battery placement but results in better dynamics.

The steering also aims for better dynamics, the fairly quick rack is mounted to a sub-frame though its steering ratio is fixed and is only adjustable in terms of torque resistance between 'Comfort' and 'Sport' drive modes.

While it’s not the most communicative steering feel, it’s certainly fit for purpose, well-weighted for the size of the Q6 and accurate in low-speed built-up areas as well as fast, flowing roads. For the latter, there’s no rear-wheel steering in the Q6 but torque split vectoring helps the SUV feel more nimble and turn in better.

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In terms of the suspension’s ability to insulate the cabin from unwanted road imperfections, a set of frequency-selective dampers handle sharp bumps quite impressively, and the mid-size SUV doesn't fall victim to stiff-feeling suspension to account for its weight even on rugged roads (though Australia will be a whole new test).

It’s also worth commending Audi on the general quality of NVH (noise, vibration and harshness) in the Q6. Not a whole lot of road or wind noise makes it into the cabin and the electric motors are muted. Very civilised.

The Q6’s suspension is slightly differently tuned between the standard and SQ6 variants, though the difference is minimal. In fact, the only noticeable difference from our limited time in-car is the acceleration. The extra 95kW does a fair bit, even though they’re physically the same motor units in both cars. Yep, almost 100kW difference is down to software.

But in both variants there’s more than enough pull, even up steep winding inclines, and at highway speeds both feel similarly capable for overtakes or on-ramp merges.

On the way back down mountains, driving almost entirely using the paddles (which alter regenerative braking intensity between coasting, light, heavy and one-pedal driving) becomes a relatively natural feeling quite quickly. It’s also, of course, a good way to help the Q6 reach that commendable range claim.

Safety – What safety equipment is fitted? What is its safety rating? 9/10

While the Q6 e-tron comes with a fairly extensive list of safety features, one new development for Audi is the ‘Adaptive Driving Assistant Plus’ which aims to assist in most facets of driving based on map data as well as cloud data collected from other Audis.

The Q6 e-tron aims to be able to do things like assist with acceleration and steering on known difficult roads, warn of upcoming hazards and help react to driving conditions or factors the driver may not notice.

As well as the usual expected inclusions like AEB, blind-spot monitoring and active cruise, the Q6 e-tron features 'Parking Assistant Plus', 'Emergency Assistant' (recognising when the driver is unresponsive), 'Front Turn Assist' (preventing collisions with oncoming traffic), 'Swerve Assist' (to help avoid obstacles), 'Front Brake Assist' (for critical impending collisions), 'Exit Warning' to avoid opening the door and becoming a hazard (to a cyclist, for example) when parked and front and rear cross-traffic alert.

Ownership – What warranty is offered? What are its service intervals? What are its running costs? 8/10

We don’t know exactly how much servicing will cost in Australia yet, but Audi offers a five-year, unlimited kilometre warranty for its cars generally.

For its electric cars specifically, Audi Australia also offers a warranty that the battery is “free from manufacturing defects in material, or [is covered] in the event of excessive loss of net battery energy for a period of 8 years or 160,000km, whichever occurs first".

  • DrivetrainAWD dual-motor
  • Battery capacity100kWh
  • Battery typeLithium-ion
  • Electric range598-625km (WLTP)
  • Plug TypeType 2
  • DC charge rate270kW
  • AC charge rate11kW
  • Electric motor output285kW (Q6) / 380kW (SQ6)
  • Electric efficiency17.0-19.6kWh/100km
Complete Guide to Audi Q6

Without knowing local pricing and specification, the Q6 e-tron is clearly a step up from the ‘needs work’ e-tron that first arrived in Australia a few years ago.

It feels capable, comfortable and civilised without leaning too hard into being a ‘fast electric car’ as could be tempting for engineers faced with highly capable electric motors. The RSQ6 e-tron and Porsche Macan are on the way for that.

When it lands here, anyone with the cash would do well to consider the Q6 if a mid-size electric SUV is the goal. It’s relatively free of gimmicks, appears to live up to its claims in terms of range, and looks like a handsome if traditional premium offering in terms of design.

If Audi is building on this as a base for future electric cars, it’s headed in the right direction.

Note: CarsGuide attended this event as a guest of the manufacturer, with travel, accommodation and meals provided.

Score

4.1/5
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