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Discussion Starter #2
Headline figure is £29,950 (after £5k subsidy).

Pluses I could see already: comes with free Type 2 charging cable (not like Vauxhall!), and fuel tank is 40 litres. Total combined range is apparently 550 miles. It is connected, so has Google Maps, and a smart phone app to check the state of charge remotely and pre-heat/cool from the app!

Top speed's 138mph in hybrid mode, 81mph in electric-only mode.

37g/km. 8.8kWh battery apparently (not sure if that's total or usable)
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I think they're shelved all-electric for now, and are focussing on the PHEV market. I think that's a phenomenally smart move - so many of our fleet drivers at work love my Ampera, but want the Merc/Audi/BMW badge. Audi are going to be selling an A3 with 3 engine choices: Petrol, diesel, or hybrid. That's going to catch people's eye - it's not some weird, geeky separate model that nobody in the dealership knows much about... it's an A3, with a BIK rate of 5%.

Interesting, I spotted that Audi are even pitting it against a standard A3:

A3-2.png
 

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Discussion Starter #6
No, but it's a step. It's £5k less than my Ampera was... And for fleet customers (50% of new vehicles?) that's a really good price point. My last A3 was about £32k.
 

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No, but it's a step. It's £5k less than my Ampera was... And for fleet customers (50% of new vehicles?) that's a really good price point. My last A3 was about £32k.
My friend put his name down a while back to be able to be one of the first to order, he received the brochure and order package a couple of days ago. A quick scan of the options list suggests to me you might want to add a few things to that £30k price which will bump it up a bit...
 

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Sorry to Audi fans but they and BMW charge ludicrous amounts of money to people who are suckers for badge snobbery. Had a couple of BMW company cars - very nice, very very nice dealerships with leather sofas and expensive coffee.

But with my own money? No way, the cars aren't significantly better than other cars (my F10 520d was poor in quality comparison to my E91 before it).
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Sorry to Audi fans but they and BMW charge ludicrous amounts of money to people who are suckers for badge snobbery.
I don't necessarily disagree with you! I've had loads of conversations with people at work who love my Ampera, but have badge snobbery.

But I think this is an important car - it will get PHEVs into the mainstream :)
 

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Too expensive simple as that.

I can see these cars selling though. The people driving them will realise the benefit of driving on electric and then will eventually demand a greater EV range on the next car they buy.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I think so too... It's not a silver bullet, or as revolutionary as Tesla, but I think the low BIK and familiar car and badge will appeal to a section of the commercial fleet market - and then, as you say, once they're used to plugging a car in, they'll clamour for more.

I was really nervous about making the EV leap - I have a really erratic diary, some weeks I cover no more than 10 miles a day all week. Other weeks I cover 1-1.5k miles. PHEV works really well for people without set routines - I can get called away without notice, so wouldn't always be fully charged. PHEV has got me used to plugging in, and shown me how many miles I can actually cover using electric charge.

I reckon my next one will be the e-Tron, or the Tesla Model 3 if it's as good as I'm hoping - and the supercharger network is robust...
 

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Too expensive simple as that.

I can see these cars selling though...
Then they're not too expensive, then.

The 30k Outlander isn't too expensive, as Mitsubishi will sell every single one they build. The 30k i3 isn't too expensive, because BMW can't build them quick enough. The Golf and the A3 will also sell themselves.

The Leaf, however, is too expensive because the supply chain isn't maxed out and so the vehicle is clearly not desirable enough at it's given price point.
 

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I think so too... It's not a silver bullet, or as revolutionary as Tesla, but I think the low BIK and familiar car and badge will appeal to a section of the commercial fleet market - and then, as you say, once they're used to plugging a car in, they'll clamour for more.

I was really nervous about making the EV leap - I have a really erratic diary, some weeks I cover no more than 10 miles a day all week. Other weeks I cover 1-1.5k miles. PHEV works really well for people without set routines - I can get called away without notice, so wouldn't always be fully charged. PHEV has got me used to plugging in, and shown me how many miles I can actually cover using electric charge.

I reckon my next one will be the e-Tron, or the Tesla Model 3 if it's as good as I'm hoping - and the supercharger network is robust...
Totally agree with you Julian. Your usage pattern suits a PHEV perfectly.

I do not have a company car, and to be honest I don't really understand all this BIK savings etc. But if a company car driver decided to drive the e-tron over a similarly speced A3 which is roughly £10k more expensive will he actually save money over the term?

If you was a private buyer it would hard to justify spending that extra £10k to "save you money" by running electric. I would like to see the MPG this etron returns when the battery has been depleted.

At the end of the day hats off to audi for introducing a PHEV to the range. I suppose you will have to goto the E-Golf if you want a BEV.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I'm not sure that the gap in pricing is £10k? My last A3 was £32k - I specced a similar e-Tron earlier and it was about £36k.

BIK on the petrol one is 15%, diesel is 18% I think. The e-Tron is 5%.

You pay your normal rate of tax (20%/40%/45%) on 5% of the list price every year (until they increase the BIK level in 2016). Same if you have a fuel card.

To give it context, I was paying about £250/month in tax for my A3, and about £120/month in tax for my fuel card.

With my Ampera it's about £40/month for the car, £30/month for the fuel card.

You can see why it was appealing!
 

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Then they're not too expensive, then.

The 30k Outlander isn't too expensive, as Mitsubishi will sell every single one they build. The 30k i3 isn't too expensive, because BMW can't build them quick enough. The Golf and the A3 will also sell themselves.

The Leaf, however, is too expensive because the supply chain isn't maxed out and so the vehicle is clearly not desirable enough at it's given price point.
Have you seen the sales figures of the current range of EV's. The leaf is clearly the highest selling EV. For one main reason, it's affordable.

Let's all remember the leaf is the best part of 4 years old. Will be interesting to see where Nissan goes now that they have 4 years advantage of producing EVs over other manufacturers.
 

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Have you seen the sales figures of the current range of EV's. The leaf is clearly the highest selling EV. For one main reason, it's affordable.

Let's all remember the leaf is the best part of 4 years old. Will be interesting to see where Nissan goes now that they have 4 years advantage of producing EVs over other manufacturers.
But "affordable" is not the antonym of "too expensive". Nor is "top seller" a synonym of "cheap enough". Faberge Eggs aren't too expensive. 38 million dollar classic Ferraris are cheap enough - both of those sell out immediately.

Nissan (by their own admission) made an investment to sell roughly double the number of Leafs that they have thus far, and so while other manufacturers hit or outstrip smaller aspirations and keep demand high, they can also do so on better tuned investment levels.

While we could get into a thing about the philosophical or moral values of going with a "cost plus" vs "market acceptable" pricing strategy, I doubt there's much "cost plus" going on in the volume (Tesla excepted) EV market at these levels - the upfront costs are too high.

For my part, all Nissan need to do to clean and jerk the UK EV market is deliver a 15 usuable kWh Range Extended Qashqai on a platform that can be re-used across the globe.
 

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Interesting listening to potential new car customers at my local Nissan dealership today....interested in the Leaf for their son....but not for them unless it could be made "to look like that" they said, pointing at the Qashqai....
 

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Interesting listening to potential new car customers at my local Nissan dealership today....interested in the Leaf for their son....but not for them unless it could be made "to look like that" they said, pointing at the Qashqai....
Quite.

The volume market is conservative. I would not mistake my own admiration for the i3 and what it represents as "is the vehicle to crack the UK market". It might be a step along the way in terms of marketing and construction, but the i5 will look much more like mid-size BMW, and the volume answer for them in the short term will be to put the same tech into the Mini brand - to my mind it's no coincidence that recent additions to the range are bigger, chunkier "can hide a battery in here more easily" designs.

Repeating myself again, this is why the A3, and both Golfs are such bellweathers for future growth.
 
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