Powertrain, engine, and brake issues are among the top complaints received by the NHTSA from vehicle owners
Introduced to the U.S. as a 2019 model in September 2018, the Audi e-tron SUV was the first fully electric production model from this brand. Offering sporty efficiency and high performance, Audi promised a vehicle that would enable customers to “enjoy fully-electric driving without compromise.” But some owners are finding there are lots of compromises. They are complaining about powertrains and engines that malfunction, as well as safety issues including brakes that fail and tire sensors that don’t work.
Click on other model year to view more problems: 2019 2021
Most Common Problems
When the first Audi e-tron was released in the U.S. there was just one model, an SUV with all-wheel drive (AWD). In 2020, they introduced a Sportback Sport AWD, and in 2022 increased the model range to 9. Now there’s an Audi e-tron SUV AWD, an e-tron S SUV AWD, as well as an e-tron Sportback and S Sportback SUV AWDs. There are e-tron and RS e-tron GT 4 DR AWDs, a Q4 e-tron SUV rear-wheel drive (RWD), and Q4 e-tron and Q4 Sportback e-tron SUV AWDs.
That’s quite a lineup. But if recalls are anything to go by, this may have been a mistake. There are already 10 recalls for the 2022 model versus 6 for the 2021 model. The 2019 and 2020 models only have 1 recall each.
Between March 23 and November 20, 2022, 8 consumers lodged complaints with the National Highway Traffic Administration (NHTSA). There are also a total of 8 recalls that have been issued by Volkswagen, which owns Audi.
- 3 complaints about the SUV, S SUV, Sportback SUV, and S Sportback SUV. There are 2 recalls, both about the rearview camera.
- 3 complaints about the GT 4 DR AWD and 6 recalls 2 because of the rear view camera. However, only 1 is the same as those mentioned above.
- 2 complaints about the RS e-tron GT and no recalls.
- No complaints about the 3 Q4 models, but 1 recall. The recall is also because of the rear view camera, but it is different from those issued for other models.
The powertrain and engine feature amongst the top complaints, as do the brakes. There are also complaints about the 2022 e-tron battery and charger in the e-tron forum.
2022 Audi e-tron Complaint Summary
|Number of Complaints
|Unknown Or Other
|Back Over Prevention
|Forward Collision Avoidance
|Forward Collision Avoidance: Automatic Emergency Braking
Powertrain and Engine Problems
All 5 of the complaints lodged about the powertrain relate to the GT and RS e-tron models. The 2 complaints that blame engine problems relate to the standard Audi e-tron and the GT 4 DR AWD.
Many of the complaints describe how the SUVs randomly switch from drive to park when stopped at stop lights. Another issue is that the accelerator doesn’t respond when they want to get started again
For example, an owner from Indianapolis tells how after backing out of a parking space an e-tron GT randomly shifted to neutral after being placed in drive. “My vehicle has shifted to neutral once and (to) park twice previously. I reported this issue to Audi of Indianapolis in May 2022, but no technical remedy was provided.”
An owner from Virginia states that when the e-tron SUV has been “resting at a stop” for more than 30 seconds, the vehicle won’t accelerate. The “SAFE” warning shows up in the instrument cluster. This has happened twice and he had to turn the power off and then back on to be able to accelerate.
Also from Virginia, another owner states how an RS e-tron GT wouldn’t move after stopping at a light. When the light changed “I pushed the accelerator (and) nothing happened.” He turned on the emergency flashers, powered down the car completely, and then restarted it. Then it functioned normally. But it happened four times in total. The ”car has already been at the dealer once and had some replacement parts done to fix the issue, but now it has occurred again and they are not sure why.”
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An owner from Missouri had just exited the highway and was slowing down for traffic when the e-tron GT displayed a message stating the drive system had malfunctioned. It wasn’t possible to continue driving, but “I was able to limp the car out of traffic to a parking lot nearby, but the car had almost no power.” The e-tron barely moved even when pushing the accelerator to the floor.
“Once in the parking lot, I turned the car off for a few minutes and then back on. The problem appeared to resolve, but once exiting the parking lot (it) immediately came back. Once again I limped to another parking lot and shut the car off longer, waiting for it to go to ‘sleep.’ After restarting the car this time the error was gone and driving functionality was normal, and has not reoccurred since (knock on wood).”
This owner tracked down a discussion in the e-tron GT owners’ forum that shows that others have experienced the same issue. It was this discussion that highlighted that turning an e-tron off and on could resolve the problem and allow continued driving.
“While the issue has not persisted, it put me in a very dangerous situation where I lost all power in the middle of traffic. I’m thankful I had exited the interstate when it occurred and it didn’t happen while I was traveling at a high speed.”
Problems with the Brakes
Other problems highlighted in complaints include air conditioning failure and a car roof leaking.
The complaint about the leak highlights the potential danger of water seeping into the electrical system of the vehicle. “This is an electronic car and water inside the car due to a car roof leak is unsafe and can potentially cause a fire.”
An owner from Georgia describes how, all of a sudden, the brakes of his 2022 Audi e-tron suddenly failed. “We were at an elementary school in (the) carpool line – near children. The brake pedal did not work at all.” But there was a warning message. This said, “stop driving, brake failure.” Luckily, the Audi-Sense alert activated the emergency parking brake before they hit the car in front of them. The driver turned the SUV off and on again, checking if it was a brake or computer issue. It was both! The car lurched forward. The warning came on again. And then the driver was able to drive off.
In the complaint, the owner states that it is unclear whether the brakes were “actually gone.” But she notes that there was a European recall for e-trons in September 2021 that suggests “this is really a brake issue.” The recall was for a condition “exactly as described here.”
Additionally, the tire sensors don’t work, producing incorrect readings on tire pressure, which is a safety issue. Again, there is a similar e-tron recall, but this model/vin number is not included. The complaint states that there are also other computer errors. For example, the screen goes black when in use and cannot be accessed while driving. While not a safety issue directly, the controls and visibility are not maintained.
“This model should not be sold in (the) U.S. (It’s) unsafe.”
The Colorado owner of an e-tron GT 4 DR also reports multiple issues that relate to safety, including unexpected braking.
“While backing out of a parking space, with the car in reverse and in motion, the car turned itself off. The car stopped abruptly. I’m not sure if it applied the brakes or some sort of parking brake – at first, I thought we got hit from behind – it was very forceful. The car turning itself off and stopping without warning is a huge safety risk, I am glad it did not happen on a roadway.”
Another malfunction, that may be related, is the Park Assist feature that malfunctioned. “I started the engine from my phone, but (it) did not move the car. I entered the car and put it in reverse.” He thought that Park Assist might have timed out, triggering the car to switch off. It took about 30 seconds before it turned off. “Depending on the parking configuration, that would be enough time to get onto a public road, (which is) a real danger.”
Additionally, this owner has experienced dozens of other minor safety issues with the car. These include unexpected phantom lane-keep turns, lane-keep turning into obstacles, inconsistent idle/creep movements, unexpected high beam re-enabling, and false SOS signals. “When I reported these to the dealer, they either said ‘unable to reproduce’ or ‘works as intended’.”
Battery and Charger Problems
A Canadian owner asked for help from members of the e-tron forum when his Sportback had been with the dealer for more than 2 months with a battery problem. Nobody had any ideas.
Another member reported problems unplugging the charger. Others on the forum said they had the same problem.
According to one response, this was an issue with the 2019 e-trons, “but Audi has since updated the software for the charge port. I have not had any issues since the update. Newer e-trons also have that option in the MMI for releasing the lock when AC charging, but older ones only have that for DC.”
What to do if Your 2022 Audi e-tron is a Lemon? Your Lemon Rights
There are no specific problems that will indicate that a 2022 Audi e-tron is a lemon, but if you think yours might be, Lemberg Law is ready to give advice. A good rule of thumb is that if your e-tron’s problems are affecting the use or value of the SUV, it could be a lemon.
Automakers frequently buy back, trade-in, or pay cash settlement agreements to customers who have bought lemon vehicles. Where there are legal fees involved, they also have to pay these.
You are welcome to contact Lemberg Law via our Helpline or by filling out a contact form. We will assess your problems and get back to you free of charge.