Some automobile launches include moments of such squirming embarrassment your tooth ache. “So, may you sum up in a single sentence the feeling of giving beginning… to the brand new Audi e-tron GT,” the presenter enquired of Mark Lichte, the corporate’s design boss. 

It was removed from the worst of an excruciating presentation of the Audi model of sister firm Porsche’s Taycan electrical super-saloon, however for all of the shilling celebs and song-and-dance hoopla (in addition to overrunning The Archers), the event’s portent was clear. 

Nearly 12 years on from the launch of Tesla’s prototype Mannequin S in southern California, this was a German automobile maker digitally going to conflict with Elon Musk’s agency for the hearts and wallets of luxurious electrical automobile patrons.

“We don’t have an excessive amount of headache with Tesla,” stated Markus Duesmann, Audi’s chief govt, in a non-public briefing final week. “We’re not meaning to compromise – we’ll keep all of the qualities we’ve, making them even higher.”

It was a barely hid salvo at what has been perceived as Tesla’s drawbacks. For all its simple innovation, the Mannequin S has had a whole lot of points, with reliability, high quality and occasional high-temperature occasions (what you and I’d name fires).