Audi Hybrid and Electric Vehicles Differences

Here at Swansway Audi, we know that entering the world of electric and hybrid vehicles is exciting – but you’re sure to have many questions that need answering. Many of our customers often enquire about the difference between hybrid and electric vehicles, so here’s a rundown of the facts to help you make an informed decision when eyeing up the all-new Audi e-tron range.

There are three types of electric vehicles: hybrid, plug-in hybrid and all-electric. Each works in a slightly different way to make low and zero-emissions driving possible.


Hybrids have both a petrol/diesel engine and a battery-driven electric motor. They switch between the two power sources in order to deliver the most efficient performance. Hybrid vehicles are not plugged in. Instead, regenerative braking charges the battery as well as the internal combustion engine. Hybrids are ideal for anyone who doesn’t want to worry about recharging their vehicle using power cables.

Plug-in Hybrids

As the name suggests, plug-in hybrids are very similar to the hybrids mentioned above in that they switch between a combustion engine and an electric motor to improve efficiency. The difference is, plug-ins use a larger battery that makes it possible to travel longer distances on electric power alone. They promote zero-emissions motoring and have their own cost advantages as you use less fuel. Of course, plug-ins need to be plugged in to benefit from zero-emissions driving. Or, you can simply use them as a regular hybrid.


Unlike hybrids and plug-ins, all-electric vehicles do not have a combustion engine and rely solely on electric power. This means they produce absolutely no emissions and benefit from tax exemptions. They must be plugged in to recharge the battery. Electric vehicles also use regenerative braking to recharge the battery and maximise efficiency.

Charging and Range Explained

If you’re thinking about heading down the Audi electric vehicle route, you might be wondering – how long does it take to charge electric cars? So, with this in mind, let’s take a look at the charging process and capabilities of Audi’s e-tron range.

Audi e-tron – how does it charge?

The e-tron is Audi’s first ever electric vehicle boasting an electric motor at the front and the rear. These offer a combined power output of 300kW and exceptional acceleration speeds. The e-tron can be charged from home using a domestic socket or a specially fitted wall box for faster charging times. It’s also compatible with high-powered charging stations. Where available, the e-tron can be replenished at 150kW terminals that can recharge the battery to 80% within 30 minutes and 100% within 50 minutes.

Audi e-tron – what’s the range?

When fully charged, the e-tron has proven to be capable of travelling an impressive 248 miles under stringent test conditions.

Audi e-tron Sportback 55 – how does it charge?

The all-new Audi e-tron Sportback 55 is a head-turner in every way. With impressive regenerative braking, the Sportback is highly efficient with recouped energy powering up to 30% of the vehicle’s impressive 240-mile range on a full charge. When extra power is needed for longer trips, the e-tron Sportback 55 can be recharged at fast-charging stations via a 150kW outlet. This can top up the battery to 80% in under 30 minutes.

All fully electric vehicles from Audi must be plugged in, but with regenerative braking allowing you to travel further without stopping, the all-new e-tron range is practical and convenient for everyday driving.

Contact Swansway today for more information about the ever-growing e-tron range or to book a test drive. As leading Audi dealerships in the North West, Midlands and North Wales, we’re here to make your Audi journey as smooth as possible.