Structure for Audi event

Nic Palmer/KCBS Radio

Audi To Reveal New Electric SUV In San Francisco

The Luxury Electric Space Gets More Crowded

KCBS Radio Morning News
September 14, 2018 - 7:41 am

SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS Radio) -- A temporary structure on a San Francisco parking lot heralds the next development in a growing competition among luxury carmakers: all-electric SUV's.

The structure at the corner of Broadway and Front Street carries a sign reading "e-tron"--Audi's terminology for the line of all-electric vehicles it's developing.

Audi plans a big "reveal" event on Monday, touting its first purely-electric vehicle, and SUV.  The company says the e-tron SUV can use a variety of charging systems, and when connected to a high-speed charging station, can achieve an 80 percent charge in about 30 minutes.

Audi e-tron
Courtesy of Audi

The e-tron will have a lot of new electronic gizmos--including a system that lets drivers pair their electronic toll tag--like FasTrak--with a transponder built into the rear-view mirror. 

Sales of the e-tron SUV are expected to begin later this year. Production began earlier in September at a factory in Belgium.

The all-electric luxury SUV space has long been dominated by the Tesla Model X.  The Audi entry comes as Tesla faces increasing competition. The Jaguar I-PACE is arriving in showrooms now, and the Mercedes-Benz EQC is expected to begin production next year.