Have owned a 2017 A3 Sportback e-tron for a year. Love the car.

Discussion in 'Audi' started by CA e-tron owner, Feb 22, 2018.

  1. CA e-tron owner

    CA e-tron owner New Member

    Have owned a 2017 A3 Sportback e-tron since February 10, 2017. Love the car.
    Only three wishes, two that can not be fulfilled:
    1. Larger battery pack. wish we had a 40+ mile pure electric range (need higher amp hour LiON batteries and/or more kWhs)
    2. Larger cargo area, like the similar VW Golf Alltrack (not as much cargo space as we would like, but not a major flaw)
    3. Audi USA needs to support towing installations, since the e-tron can tow up to 1600kg. We had to purchase our towbar from Germany and have it shipped to the USA. Still not installed, but our local dealer will remove the rear bumper and all sensor wiring, drive it to the parking lot for me to install the four bolts of the towbar, then drive it back into the service bay and reinstall the rear bumper and all sensor wiring. Annoying, but our e-tron has much higher horsepower, much higher torque, and about 500 lbs higher tow capacity than our 2004 Volvo V40, which has towed our 1500 lb. trailer easily.

    We love the twin voltage portable EVSE. Have only used it on 120 volts, but have an adapter for both NEMA 14-50 and 16-50 sockets. Use our GE Wattstation at home for charging.

    Backup screen is VERY clear, even better than the VW Alltrack.

    Smartphone app is adequate, but wish we could remotely check on overall miles per gallon and EV/gasoline percentages. Still have to view these from within Audi, not on smartphone app.

    EPA has it wrong with range. In the dead of winter in CA (usually not much below 30 degrees F), we are 16-18 miles EV range, which is right there with EPA ratings. The rest of the year, we are at 20-22 miles EV range. Our overall EV + gasoline range is usually 430-460 miles, well above the EPA rating of only 360 miles. We have driven 410 miles on a road trip, filled up, and still had at least 50-70 miles more range available.

    We have been as high as 210 mpg, but are now down at 101 mpg, after several trips of 90 to 140 miles, well beyond the 20-22 miles electric range. While driving around town, we are ALWAYS in EV mode. Not reason to use gasoline when we have a rooftop solar array and recharge primarily for free.

    Any other questions, feel free to reply and ask. I volunteer as the webmaster, LinkedIn manager, and print media designer for the Sacramento Electric Vehicle Association (SacEVA.org). I owned a Coda for 4 years, but could not continue driving a vehicle without any warranty after the company declared bankruptcy. Am still waiting for my chance to configure our Tesla Model 3 (waited in line on March 31, 2016), which will fill our garage with a pure BEV and our Audi PHEV.
     
    Domenick likes this.
  2. CA e-tron owner

    CA e-tron owner New Member

    Go to menu, then slide the round chooser knob to the side. This gets you into the menu categories for EV/gasoline percentages, plus several other categories. Whenever you see the striped red trapezoid to the left of an item, you can slide/rock the chooser knob to enter more categories.
     
  3. Domenick

    Domenick Administrator Staff Member

    Thanks for sharing all that.
    I dub thee the resident InsideEVs Audi A3 Sportback expert. :)

    No pressure.
     
  4. CA e-tron owner

    CA e-tron owner New Member

    Thank you, Domenick,...... I think. This sounds like the same path that I took to become webmaster, LinkedIn manager, and print media designer for SacEV. I said, "ok", and suddenly I was doing a lot more than expected. I do enjoy it, most of the time.
    I will try to answer all the questions that come my way on the e-tron. I have been in conversations with Audi in Germany, attempting to discover more about the battery pack and towing, but it has been very painful getting comprehensive answers to my questions.
     
    Domenick likes this.
  5. Frank K

    Frank K New Member

    I am torn between a Tesla 3 or waiting of the Audi Etron to replace our second car (a Prius) - at least I am on the list for the Tesla right now. Thanks for offering more answers, I might get bac tou you.
     
  6. CA e-tron owner

    CA e-tron owner New Member

    Here is the information on the Audi A3 Sportback e-tron towbar from Westfalia in Germany. There are now more models available for purchase than when I bought mine. I also included tow specs from Audi.
    One more attachment is on the possibility of new higher amphour battery modules for Euro vehicles. Nothing has appeared online since this original article, so I am not holding my breath.

    I would love the new Audi eTron EV, but the Tesla Supercharger network is one amazing benefit that is still not matched by anyone else. Some companies are working with European manufacturers to remedy that, but they are in their first stages of development and deployment.
     

    Attached Files:

    Domenick likes this.
  7. CA e-tron owner

    CA e-tron owner New Member

    Audi has just decided to cancel production of their A3 Sportback etron and replace it with their NEW etron, which is between the Q7 and Q8 in size, way too large for our tastes. It is a beautiful car, but is supposed to cost $85K in the USA when it is first delivered in May-June of 2019. That is in Tesla Model X cost range.

    Unfortunately, the specs for the cancelled 2019 A3 Sportback etron included a bump in range 50% higher than the earlier versions. I wish that we could get those battery packs, but are unsure that Samsung will provide them. The NEW etron uses cylindrical cells, similar to Tesla, rather than pouches, so I doubt there will be any support from Audi for upgrading our A3 etron battery packs.
     
  8. Frank K

    Frank K New Member

    Do you have a source for the planned 50% bump in the 2019 A3 etron? I know it is not coming, but of someone thought about the battery there might be hope. I'd love to upgrade my 2017 A3 etron with a larger range battery.

    On another note: As I mentioned above I was on the fence for a Model 3 or the new Etron as our second car .... Decided for the Model 3 (based on the super charger network) ... got it 3 weeks ago (long range 310 miles and AWD) and am happy as can be :)
     
  9. Robert Delray

    Robert Delray New Member

    Hi, I am buying one of the few 2018 A3 e-tron remaining available in USA, PremiumPLUS trim. (Dec 2018) Is it advisable to obtain the 32amp home charger (around $500 on amazon) . I am in Florida so maybe the warmer year-round weather may help extend the electric range to around 20 miles? Many thanks for the comments.
     
  10. Frank K

    Frank K New Member

    The charger question really depends on your charging habits. I charge every night, which is easily possible with the charger provided by Audi.
    The charger can do both 110 and 208 V, depending on what outlet you have available or are willing to install in your garage.
    110 V is sufficient to charge overnight (~ 8 hrs), 208 V fully charges in about 2.5 hours.
    So if you do not plan to carry your Audi charger around in the car, there is no need to install an additional charger.
    I never carry mine, as there are plenty of level 2 chargers around if you want to top off during the day.

    I hope this helps.
     
  11. Tom SD

    Tom SD New Member

    i also like my 2017 etron car, got in in Dec 2016. my lease is up in 12 months. unfortunately it sounds like audi isnt going to have anything to jump into in a similar price range in either PHEV or BEV now unless something changes.

    I'd buy the car if it weren't the unknown of replacing batteries in the future / audis reputation for expensive maintenance costs.
     
  12. Sandroad

    Sandroad Well-Known Member

    The A3 Etron is scarce as hen's teeth in the midwest. We probably would have purchased one if there had been any available within a couple hundred miles of central lower Michigan in 2017. Even now, as I look occasionally for used, they are just not here. :(
     
  13. Heather

    Heather New Member

    I'm looking seriously at an 2016 Audi A-3 Etron with 46K miles and a full 3 years of driving time. It's a fully loaded car that has been well maintained. My big concern is that battery and the likelihood that we will continue to get the electric range for the next 5 years. What have other A3 Etron owners experienced in terms of battery degradation? Do you think it's risky to buy a used PHEV with so much mileage?
     
  14. CA e-tron owner

    CA e-tron owner New Member

    We like our 2017 Audi A3 Sportback e-tron very much, however buying a used one now might be a gamble, especially with Audi stopping production on the vehicle. We always purchase our cars, so we are in it for the long term, so we will keep our A3 e-tron until it no longer runs. We have had almost no issues with our car, however, we have noticed a greater decline in expected battery range this winter, much more than our previous winter.

    Would we buy it again? We likely would, though we really wish that Audi used the new 37 amp hour battery cells, rather than the 24 amp hour from Samsung (allows for 30 miles of EV range). Interestingly, the VW Passat GTE PHEV has been brought back from cancellation with that same larger battery pack, but not the Audi. We have the same battery pack size as Toyota Prius Primes, but the Audi is much faster in acceleration, handles better, is very comfortable, has good sight lines, and is much more powerful than the Prius. We can even tow up to 1600kg, though we are only planning to tow 1350 pounds, or <650kg. The A3 Sportback e-tron is very nice for long trips, though we hate adding gas. We currently use it primarily on trips where we can either charge at one end or make the entire round trip on EV only. We are now at 231mpg and use our Tesla Model 3 for longer trips.

    We are still having problems with wiring support from Audi USA to install the charging circuit for our towbar to keep our trailer battery pack charged while on the road. This is a simple situation in Europe, but the US vehicles switched to the 2-light combined turn/brake lights from the 3-light amber turn signal wiring in Europe. Therefore, no simple wiring kits. The new all electric e-tron is capable of towing, so there should be assistance from Audi USA eventually. It is just frustrating to have to wait for something which should be simple to implement.

    While decreased range can be expected in the winter, the Central Valley of California definitely does not experience the dramatic low temperatures of the midwest, New England, or the far north. We expected no more than a 10% to 20% decrease in EV range, dropping us from 20 miles for most of the year, to 16-18 for the winter. Unfortunately, we have occasionally seen drops as low as 13 miles when the outside temperature has been 48 degrees F. That is NOT what we expected, but Audi service centers are not (yet) equipped to test individual battery modules to determine whether they are outside of specs. They are only able to check error codes, which is much less than our bankrupt Coda EV was able to show service techs. The good news is that our local Audi dealer is sending techs to training, since VW/Audi has discovered that it is prohibitively expensive to replace an entire battery pack when problems arise, rather than to diagnose problems and simply replace damaged modules. We have to wait until May, but hope that our pack can be tested to determine whether we have a malfunctioning module. Our Coda had one module out of spec. After it was replaced, we returned to our expected 110 mile range. We kept that range for the full 4 years we owned that car. We hope that the Samsung pouch cells are not prone to early failure, but we are unable to say whether that is the issue that caused us to drop from our expected 16-18 miles range in winter to only 13 that one day.

    I hope this helps you with your decision to purchase a used A3 Sportback e-tron.
     
    Domenick likes this.
  15. Frank K

    Frank K New Member

    I have a slightly different take on this. We also have a 2017 A3 etron - 1.5 years and 25k miles. Have driven it for 2 winters now and yes, we see reduced range in cold temps. This year was worse than last year, but the temps were often between 15-20 F. Now that it is warming up again, I can confirm that there is no loss in battery range from last year. It is a great car (even compared to our TESLA M3, LR AWD), fun to drive and practical. One wish: Make the new Passat battery available as an upgrade, then my work commute would become fully electric and my gas mileage would rise significantly about the 60+ MPG I am getting right now.
     
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  16. Heather

    Heather New Member

    Thanks so much for the feedback. We are awaiting word from Audi Canada on just how much performance degradation on the lithium battery within the warranty period would be considered a fault and result in battery replacement. We may not get a real answer but we are trying. Some other manufacturers (incl. VW) have promised no less than 75% of original performance within the lithium battery warranty period.
     
    Domenick likes this.
  17. Domenick

    Domenick Administrator Staff Member

    That's a smart question to ask. Let's hope they have an answer for you.
     
  18. JeffC

    JeffC New Member

    1) I too wish for a larger battery pack. I think 40-50 miles would be perfect.
    2) It's a little small but for a plug in hybrid it's pretty usable

    I liked the dual voltage of the EVSE, but I don't like it's size. I used it on 120V until I had a 240V outlet installed. I needed a longer cable so I eventually got a wall mount EVSE.

    In the winter I run it in Hybrid mode in the morning which helps with the heating of the car.


     
  19. Heather

    Heather New Member

    Well it's done! We ended up buying a 2017 E-Tron with 25K rather than the 2016 with 75K. In the end, Audi Canada could not (would not?) give a definitive answer on battery warranty i.e. at what performance level within the warranty period would they replace a battery. We took the leap understanding that battery performance would degrade and that at 8 years we would own a car likely needing a $12K battery replacement. The car is driving very well, and made my partners first 25KM commute in EV mode. Now - we need to decide on a charger so that I don't have to worry each night that someone is going to steal the one that came with the car. Opinions?
     
    Domenick likes this.
  20. Domenick

    Domenick Administrator Staff Member

    I would suggest checking out this article by our home charger expert: The Ultimate Buyer’s Guide To Home EV Chargers: Plus Top 5 Picks
     
    JeffC likes this.

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