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Audi E-Tron tweaks squeeze extra 15 miles of range from electric SUV

So far, Audi hasn't confirmed it's bringing the updates to the US, but it seems highly likely.

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Audi E-Tron S Line for Europe

S Line means sporty, at least in the looks department.

Audi

The latest Audi E-Tron will take drivers an extra 15.5 miles, thanks to some engineering and software tweaks. Audi of Europe said last Friday the upgrades are all to improve efficiency, but there's something new for the aesthetics, too, in a new S Line exterior package.

The meat and potatoes of the upgrades reside in the wheel brake and electric motors. Audi said its engineers developed a new wheel brake that minimizes losses occurring where the brake caliper meets the brake disc. Changes to the motor system also see the rear motor power the car almost exclusively, cutting the front motor out of the electricity supply the vast majority of the time. Now, the front motor comes to life when the driver wants more power, and both motors will work in concert just as before. The updates simply keep things more frugal.

Usable range in the battery is up, too, and all of this will take the WLTP cycle range figure to a total of 271 miles. We often say how generous European testing standards are, and this apples-to-apples comparison will underscore it. In the US, the EPA rates the E-Tron to go 204 miles.

As for if these upgrades will come to America, an Audi representative said the company is "hopeful" before adding details haven't been finalized for the next model year.

If they do apply to the US model, the extra 15.5 miles will definitely shrink to reflect EPA testing practices as well.

Other tweaks to the E-Tron include improved regenerative braking and a more efficient cooling system with a pump that uses less power. Audi estimates the regen function accounts for 30 percent of the driving range.

Audi E-Tron S Line for Europe

The E-Tron really doesn't try to look like a spaceship, and that's fine by me.

Audi

The new S Line package keepshe exterior fresh. We don't know if there's an E-Tron with the sporty badge coming, but the S Line package looks the part with a more aggressive front fascia, a spoiler and a rear diffusor. S Line badges are also part of the package, of course. All trims get the buyer's choice of body color rather than a contrast finish.

European buyers will find the updates available now when ordering an E-Tron.

Originally published Dec. 3.
Update, Dec. 4: Adds comment from Audi.

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