Audi Brings Faster 22kW AC Charging With e-tron Update

Faster charging and a host of other minor updates are coming to the Audi’s e-tron lineup. 

Audi has recently given its all-electric e-tron lineup a mild refresh. Among the updates includes the option of a second on-board charger that doubles the charging power from 11 kW up to 22 kW when connected to the appropriate charging terminals. 

Audi e-tron Sportback

This update is now currently offered on the higher tier e-tron 55 and e-tron Sportback 55 trim levels, with the lower tier e-tron 50 and e-tron Sportback 50 variants receiving this update in the middle of 2021. Audi has also announced that the standard mode 3 charging cable, which enables all e-tron models to charge at public terminals, has already been upgraded to this higher 22 kW charging capacity. 

To accompany this increased charging capacity enabled on the e-tron, the German automaker has also launched an updated ‘connect charging system’. Built for home charging purposes, Audi claims that a full charge for its e-tron 55 models will be complete in under 5 hours. This updated smart charger also features a 5-inch touchscreen and WiFi connectivity, thus allowing owners to control the charging process through either the screen or through the myAudi app.

Moreover, in conjunction with a compatible home energy management system, this new charging system adds additional functionality such as taking into account the electrical usage elsewhere in the home when charging, as to not overload the household electrical system. Another useful additional feature is the ability for owners to dictate when and which electrical source the e-tron derives its charge from. 

Owners are now able to program for their e-tron to only charge when electricity is less expensive under a variable electricity rate. Alternately, owners can also program their e-tron to mainly charge from solar panels installed on the roof of the house, thereby further contributing to the zero-emission mobility ideal. 

Other updates made to this Audi EV this time round includes a slightly redesigned steering wheel, which supposedly now only needs driver inputs once a minute to keep the adaptive cruise assist active. Audi e-tron S models also receive new-look 22-inch 5-spoke titanium grey alloy wheels as part of this very light refresh.

While news of such a minor update, on an Audi model that will probably never see the day locally in any official capacity, may not be exactly the most newsworthy of topics. It is however news like this that really demonstrates the electrified future of the wider automotive industry that is rapidly upon us. When have you last heard that there was an update on the speed of how much fuel you can pump?

PRESS RELEASE: Faster charging, more convenience behind the wheel – Audi is systematically enhancing its e-tron models. The all-electric SUV and Sportback SUV coupe are receiving a number of new equipment features.

AC charging: double the capacity

Fast charging with direct current (DC) has always been a major strength of the e-tron models. Now Audi is also enabling faster charging with alternating current (AC). Effective immediately, e-tron 55 and e-tron Sportback 55 customers can order a second on-board charger that doubles the power from 11 kW to as much as 22 kW at appropriate charging terminals. This option will follow for the e-tron 50 and e-tron S models in mid-2021. The standard mode 3 cable, with which all e-tron models can charge at public terminals, has already been converted to a charging capacity of 22 kW.

Intelligently connected: the e-tron charging system connect

The new charging system connect, which Audi offers for home garages, is also designed for a charging capacity of up to 22 kW. It is designed for use at household outlets and can thus also be used when away from home. Using a suitable domestic installation, the e-tron 55 models can be fully charged in just under five hours. The charging system connect comprises an operating unit with a 5-inch touch display and a wall mount. Its Wi-Fi internet connection enables both control via the myAudi app and function updates. Audi recommends a three-phase, 400-volt outlet for optimal use of the charging system connect. If desired, an electrician referred by the local Audi dealer will check the power supply and install the suitable technology as needed.

In conjunction with a compatible home energy management system from SMA Solar Technology or the Hager Group, the e-tron charging system connect offers additional, intelligent functions. For example, the Audi e-tron can take account of the needs of other consumers in the household and charge with the remaining power available in order to avoid overloading the home electrical system. The charging system also allows customers to define individual priorities, such as charging when electricity is less expensive under a variable electricity rate. If the home is equipped with a photovoltaic system, the car can be charged preferentially using the electricity generated by the system. Charging planning then considers forecast periods of sunshine. Additional features of the e-tron charging system connect include PIN protection against unauthorized use and the recording of charging energy.

New steering wheel: even more convenience with adaptive cruise assist

The updated steering wheels make driving even more convenient. The driver only has to lightly touch the touch-sensitive rim once per minute with his or her hand to ensure that the lateral guidance of the adaptive cruise assist remains active. The driver remains fully responsible for steering the vehicle, however. The high-end system, which uses data from the central driver assistance controller (zFAS), can keep the Audi e-tron centered in the lane. It also manages longitudinal guidance across the entire speed range. It supports the driver with accelerating, braking, maintaining speed, keeping distance and in traffic jam situations.

New size for the S models: 22-inch wheels

The Audi e-tron S and the Audi e-tron S Sportback come standard with 20-inch wheels, with 21-inch wheels available as an option. Audi Sport GmbH has now upped the ante – with 10.5Jx22 wheels and 285/35 series tires. The titanium gray wheels have a five-spoke structure and a gloss turned finish.

These new features for the e-tron models can be ordered immediately. Customers will begin receiving the improved vehicles toward the end of the year.

Joshua Chin

Automotive journalist. Professional work on and Personal writing found at Instagram: @driveeveryday

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