It’s been revealed that Audi’s plans to electrify its entire model range has been expedited, and latest developments include a new entry-level e-tron hatch to take on the likes of the Tesla Model 3 and Volkswagen ID.3, AutoExpress reports.

The baby e-tron is said to be similar in size to the Audi A3, but offers much better interior space thanks to the Volkswagen Group’s new MEB platform, designed for compact to midsize vehicles. Apparently, the small e-tron will be the first of three Audi EVs based on the MEB platform while pricing is tipped to be around £30,000 (RM153k).

Battery sizes could range between 58 kWh to 77 kWh, offering at least 400 km of range on a full charge. Models with larger batteries could see range bumped up to 515 km as well. As for the electric motor, base models will get a sole rear-mounted motor, but those willing to shell out more money can get the hotter dual-motor version with quattro all-wheel drive. The baby e-tron is expected to hit the market in 2021, after Volkswagen, Seat, and Skoda release their MEB-based EVs.

On the grander scheme of things, some of Audi’s best-known models will also receive pure EV iterations, and the range will be complemented by never-before-seen EVs as well. As for its halo model, talks of creating a successor to the R8 is supposedly causing a huge internal debate within the firm’s management.

Audi CEO Bram Schot recently said: “Focusing also means leaving out. For example, the R8 sports car, do we need a successor with a combustion engine? Does this fit with our vision? The discussion will give us an answer to that.”

However, recent developments indicate that the R8 will in fact be replaced by a pure electric model, with company board member for technical development, Hans-Joachim Rothenpieler string that a technical solution has already been drawn up. “Normally you have a wheel at each corner with the battery pack in the centre, and the pack is 12 or 13 centimetres tall. But this makes the base of the seating point higher,” he said.

“So for small, sporty cars with only two seats, we need a different concept – such as one bit of the battery in the centre of the car and another bit in front of the front wheels, or behind the rear wheels. Either way, we end up splitting the battery. That’s what we’re looking at for these iconic cars, Rothenpieler explained.

This solution also applies to the TT, another one of Audi’s iconic models that will also be making the switch to electric power. “In a few years, we will replace the TT with a new emotive model in the same price range – an electric car,” Schot revealed.

On the technical side of things, the TT may be based on the PPE platform that Audi is developing with Porsche. The PPE architecture is designed for low-riding cars across various segments – the upcoming Porsche Taycan will be the first model to sit on the new platform. The first PPE-based Audi model will be the e-tron GT, which will debut in 2021.

The sleek four-door coupe will be Audi’s third EV model after the e-tron and e-tron Sportback SUVs. It’s expected to cost around £100,000 (RM510k), and will go right up against the Tesla Model S. The e-tron GT will use a 90 kWh lithium-ion battery offering 400 km of range, and it provides power to two electric motors that produce 582 hp. The 0-100 km/h sprint is done in 3.5 seconds, or 0-200 km/h in just over 12 seconds.