Vehicles | February 11, 2021 6:00 am

Why Audi Is Basically Remaking the Porsche Taycan

There’s a good reason the new E-Tron GT is so similar to the electric Porsche

Audi E-Tron GT electric car
If we already have the Porsche Taycan, do we need the Audi E-Tron GT?
Audi

This week, Audi unveiled the new 2022 E-Tron GT, adding an undeniably sexy sport sedan to the premium brand’s all-electric lineup, which until now consisted of two SUVs. Well, technically they’re adding two sedans, as it will also be available as a higher-performance, higher-priced RS model when it goes on sale this summer.

The base E-Tron GT is a four-door car that starts around the $100,000 mark, can hit 0-60 mph in 3.9 seconds, and has an estimated EPA range of 238 miles on a full charge. If you’re writing these numbers down and comparing them to similar EVs on the market, you may come across an uncanny resemblance. The Porsche Taycan 4S, which was that automaker’s base EV before the rear-wheel drive model was announced last month, is also a four-door car that starts around the $100K mark, can hit 0-60 mph in 3.8 seconds, and has an estimated range of 227 miles. 

What’s going on here?

While you won’t find any mention of Porsche during the current launch of the production E-Tron GT, back in 2018 when Audi unveiled a concept version of the car, they wrote that the “technology for this automobile was developed in close collaboration with Porsche.”

In short, the two automakers sit under the Volkswagen Group umbrella, and for a long time they’ve been collaborating on electric vehicle tech, which they always planned on sharing. It’s similar to how the MEB platform on the Volkswagen ID.4 will be used on the entire electric VW lineup; it just seems strange here because we’re talking about essentially competing brands. But once you realize how much money is needed to develop EV platforms, and also how the simplified electric powertrains lend themselves to modularity, it starts to make a lot more sense. 

So no, Audi isn’t ripping off Porsche. And despite the similar underpinnings, you don’t even need to necessarily pit the two cars against each other. The Taycan is a true-blue Porsche, certainly a more faithful extension of the storied marque’s lineup than the Cayenne and Macan. Meanwhile, the new E-Tron GT is immediately recognizable as an Audi, though one of the more dynamic, extravagant and thrilling designs to come out of their stables in a long time (not much of the design seems to have changed from the concept car — a rarity in the automotive world).

Although, speaking of the concept car, we’d guess there are a lot of Avengers: Endgame fans out there who are going to be disappointed when they see the GT’s price tag.

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