The Upper Echelon of Electric Motoring

by BTM

Sun, 07 January 2024

Audi e-tron GT Bahrain

The Audi e-tron GT represents the pinnacle of progress for the iconic German brand. Kristian Harrison finds out why there’s never been a better time to put the brakes on internal combustion and go electric.

As a proud Audi owner myself, I was excited to be given the opportunity to test my trusty 2008 TT’s younger cousin. Curiously, it was the first motor from the marque other than my own that I’d driven in many years, so it was interesting to compare 15 years of technological advancement. 

Settling into the spacious cockpit, the instant dose of familiarity hit me. Of course, there are a few more bells and whistles these days, not least of all the 10.1-inch touchscreen infotainment system in place of the CD player (ask your parents, kids), but everything was still where I expected it to be. 

Too often, I find that the latest cars, especially those of upmarket competitors, try too hard to be futuristic and feature knobs, dials and touch panels that would be more at home in the Millennium Falcon than a car on Earth. What I particularly loved about the e-tron GT was just how intuitive it felt. From the simple setup on the steering wheel which would ensure I’d spend more time with eyes on the road and not the digital instrument cluster, to the satisfying click of the air conditioning switches, to the cruise control toggle which is usually the bane of my existence in unfamiliar cars but to my pleasant surprise had stayed exactly the same, to the touchscreen which was super-easy to navigate without endless menu-digging, it’s clear that the e-tron GT has been superbly designed with driver and not fashion at the forefront of thinking. 

Of course, many cars look nice and feel comfortable, but it all boils down to the main question: what is it like to drive? And oh boy, is this a beauty. I challenge anybody still reluctant to buy into the concept of electric automobiles to spend even an hour with the e-tron GT and still stubbornly cling to their nostalgic love for roaring engines and CO2 emissions. 

530 brake horsepower. 0 to 100kmph in 4.1 seconds. Instant maximum torque. The specs of the latest V12 hypercar, you ask? Nope, it’s the Audi e-tron GT breaking down the last boundaries of myth around what an electric motor (or two of them, as it turns out) can do, and blowing your socks off with a hard-hitting reality. I can’t put into print what my colleague shouted as I found a long stretch of quiet road, flicked the car into maximum-performance ‘Dynamic’ mode and put the pedal to the floor, but it was something similar to ‘Wow!’ as the G-forces you’d expect from an accelerating roller coaster threw us back in our seats. 

Speaking of busting myths, the 93KWh, 36-module battery has a maximum range of 488kms, which I’d wager not many people in the Kingdom cover in a week. Far from needing to stop to recharge ‘every half an hour’, you’d likely never have to worry about it, especially with an installed home charger. 

Feature-wise, the e-tron GT has all the gadgets you’d expect in 2024, from myriad driver-assistance technologies, including a fully 3D camera for parking assistance, to wireless charging, full navigation and a health and safety inspector’s dream of accident-avoidance features. 

Wrap all of this inside a sleek, aerodynamic body with your choice of glass or carbon fibre roof (if you want something a little lighter) and an automatic spoiler, then you have yourself an absolute gem. When it comes to finally saying goodbye to my beloved baby, I know where I’ll be looking next. 

For one final grin-inducing flourish, as I drove back into the Audi Centre Bahrain and turned the engine off for the final time, I was hit with the famous Audi ‘badum-badum’ heartbeat as the car said goodbye in its own way. 

‘Vorsprung Durch Technik’ indeed. 

The new Audi e-tron GT is available now at the Behbehani Brothers Audi Centre Bahrain. For more information, call 17 459-933.