Audi confirmed Monday that it is recalling 1,644 E-tron electric SUVs, including 544 vehicles that have been delivered to customers, due to an issue with the battery pack's seal that it says could lead to "a short circuit or thermal event". The company is taking the recall very seriously and said that the recall is voluntary and affects approximately 540 e-tron vehicles in the United States that have been delivered to customers and 1,644 in total.
Audi is not aware of any such shorts or thermal events, it says, insisting that the move to recall its first electric vehicle was made "out of an abundance of caution".
The e-tron isn't the first of the new wave of "Tesla fighting" premium EVs to be recalled, with the Jaguar I-Pace recently being recalled due to a potential fault in its regenerative braking system. Not all vehicles delivered to customers so far areaffected, the Audi representative said. Only certain e-trons are equipped with the grommet in question, and Audi of America is contacting those consumers directly by phone and mail.
"We are applying an abundance of caution as no such incidents have been reported globally", the company said in a statement.
Audi is now in the process of showing the e-tron to its customers in New Zealand, with the first cars expected to arrive here in July. According to a recall notice posted on the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's website, if the regenerative-braking systems on the affected I-Pace vehicles fail, there will be a delay between when the driver presses the brake pedal and when the vehicle begins to slow down. It began contacting E-Tron owners in the USA last week, prior to a warning from federal safety regulators, and should have a fix available by August.
New e-tron owners will have the option of continuing to drive the vehicle until a warning light illuminates.