Following the debut of the Audi Q4 e-tron concept in March last year, a development mule for the production version has been spotted by our spy photographers as it undergoes cold-weather testing in northern Sweden. The vehicle here appears rather alike the Volkswagen ID.4 in silhouette, though the Ingolstadt license plate and type of camouflage foil give it away as an Audi product, says our source.

At the front, we can see that the concept’s headlamp elements have now given way to what is likely the productionised version, the slim LEDs of the concept replaced by a larger main beam unit. The same goes for the tail lamps, now appearing more like the units from the Volkswagen ID.4 concept. The development vehicle’s side mirrors are larger than on the concept, while the sculpting over the front and rear wheelarches appear less abrupt. Meanwhile, the rear bumper now features a less prominent diffuser element.

Like the ID.4 concept, the Q4 e-tron is also underpinned by the Volkswagen Group’s MEB modular platform for electric vehicles, allowing for a dual-motor setup, with one on each axle. At the Q4 e-tron concept’s debut, the electric SUV was touted with a range of 450 km on the WLTP test cycle when equipped with the 82 kWh battery pack, feeding a 204 PS/310 Nm rear motor and a 102 PS/150 Nm front motor.

Thus equipped, the Q4 e-tron concept has a total system output of 306 PS, or the same as the ID.4 concept, the Audi rated for a 0-100 km/h sprint time of 6.3 seconds and an electronically limited top speed of 180 km/h. This configuration could be for the top variant, and later versions of the production vehicle could feature even more frugal powertrains for longer range.

Measuring 4.59 m long, the Q4 e-tron is somewhere between the lengths of the Audi Q3 and the Q5, though with better interior space than the latter due to the electric powertrain. Should the production vehicle closely mimic the concept’s mechanicals, axle load distribution would be an even 50:50 split between the front and rear axles, where suspension is by MacPherson struts in front and a multi-link setup for the rear.

Like the Volkswagen ID.3 hatchback with which it shares the MEB electric powertrain platform, the Audi Q4 e-tron will be built in Zwickau, Germany, according to our sources. Naturally, to make the most of its development outlay, Audi will be producing further electric models from this MEB architecture.