Audi Promises 3 EVs by 2020
While admitting that 2016 proved to be “a very challenging year” for the firm as a result of the diesel crisis, Rupert Stadler, Chairman of the Board of Management of Audi AG said at the company's annual press conference that it is moving forward to develop a trio of EVs by the end of the decade. He also promised widespread use of electrification in several more current vehicles.
Stadler also confirmed the automaker is speeding up its involvement with self-driving vehicles, specifically through its new Autonomous Intelligent Driving GmbH subsidiary. Located in in Munich and open to industry partners, it’s currently developing a system primarily focused on cities and urban environments. The Audi technology is designed to be adaptable to vehicles produced by other automakers as well as be a key to new types of future mobility services, including robot taxis.
On the traditional product front, Stadler said the upcoming 2018 Audi A8 flagship will be joined by next-gen versions of the Audi A5 Coupe and Q5 compact SUV models as well as a wider global distribution of its Q2 subcompact SUV. A new crossover-coupe take on the Audi A7 fastback sedan will launch in 2018 as well as the range-topping Q8 SUV to be followed by a new Audi Q4 model in 2019. Described as “a sporty compact utility vehicle,” the Q4 is expected to share the same MQB modular architecture as the next gen Q3 and draw a fair bit of its design character from the Audi TT Offroad Concept that debuted in 2014 at the Beijing Auto Show.
While few specifics on any of its new EV models, that green trio will certainly include the midsize Audi Q6 e-tron Quattro, originally previewed in 2015 at the Frankfurt Auto Show as the Audi e-tron Quattro Concept. Stadler further indicated that a premium compact car based on VW’s Modular Electric Drive platform will be launched in 2020 and noted that starting in 2021, the automaker plans to electrify at least one model in each of its core series by 2025.
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