There is but one notable technical difference among the group. Each car uses a 14.1-kWh battery, but the lithium-ion units in the A6, A7 and A8 use 104 pouch cells divided into eight modules. The Q5's battery uses prismatic cells. Batteries in the quartet live beneath the luggage compartments and are able to power the range to 24.8 miles of electric driving on the WLTP cycle.
The comfort versions of the A6, A7, and Q5 in 50 TFSI e guise produce 295 hp and 332 lb-ft with the aid of an electric motor in their dual-clutch transmissions. The performance versions, known as 55 TFSI e, dial up the electric boost to 363 hp and 369 lb-ft and automatically get S line features. That means a black styling package, red brake calipers, privacy windows and a sport suspension.
The PHEVs glean a number of E-Tron features such as an active accelerator pedal that provides haptic feedback for the most efficient driving, and a powertrain tied into the navigation system to predict the best application of power. The established driver can select Comfort, Efficiency, Auto and Dynamic modes, which are joined by EV, Auto and Hold modes that decide how and when the battery will be used or charged.
In Auto, the vehicles drive in EV mode until the ICE becomes necessary. The electric motor handles minor deceleration events, recouping up to 80 kW, and shares braking with the hydraulic system up to 0.4 G, beyond which the hydraulic brakes fully take over.
Each model will come with cables for home and commercial sockets along with a control panel. It takes about two hours to refill the battery at a 7.2-kW charger, but customers can order a Level 3 cable if they hate waiting.