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At the 2012 Audi Annual Press Conference, Audi CEO Rupert Stadler confirmed that the German automaker will be manufacturing plug-in hybrid variants of their A3, A4, and Q7 models.
“While we are planning small-scale series production for this car, which is a vital element in our innovation and technology plans, the electric driving experience will become a reality for a growing clientele with our plug-in hybrids,” Stadler said.
The market launch for the A3 plug-in hybrid is set for 2014 while the next-generation A4 and Q7 will get plug-in hybrid variants starting in 2014 and in successive years. By 2020, Audi hopes to have an e-tron available in every segment to help achieve total sales in the six-figure range.
“Our pioneering vehicle in this field is the Audi A3, with the market launch of a plug-in version slated for 2014. This will be followed by the next-generation Audi A4 and Audi Q7 plug-in cars – starting in 2014 and in successive years. In 2020, we want to have an e-tron available in every segment and to achieve total sales in the six-figure range,” Stadler said.
Stadler also addressed Audi’s focus in optimizing their gas and diesel engines to help reduce CO2 emissions, spoke about the first Audi race car with a hybrid engine, and was clear that their goal for 2012 will be to “achieve stronger growth than the market as a whole.” It’s widely speculated that the automotive industry will experience a 4-percent increase in car sales this year, but Audi wants to best that average.
It will continue to target the Chinese market with hopes to achieve double-digit growth yet again. The German automaker plans to nearly double their dealer network in China by the end of 2013. The Q3 will also be introduced to China and a new generation of the popular A6L (long version) will be launched before 2012 ends.
GALLERY: Audi A3 Hatchback
The second generation Q7 will exhibit some serious weight loss, about 880 lbs., a byproduct of new lightweight aluminum construction. The supercharged 3.0L V6 would be the obvious choice for the base engine in the new Q7, with diesel and plug-in hybrid setups both strong possibilities.
This second generation Audi SUV will share its new platform with the Porsche Cayenne and the Volkswagen Touareg, both of which also benefit from a large weight loss thanks to the new aluminum structure.
The Q7 mule you see in the photos is merely a test vehicle for Audi’s internal re-workings done on the newest generation SUV, but the organs of the car undergoing tests suggest that the skin of the new Q7 will be revealed soon. The Audi has always been bulkier than its Cayenne and Touareg counterparts, so expect the size and general shape of the vehicle to stay the same.
GALLERY: 2013 Audi Q7
Audi is introducing their new line of bi-turbo diesel engines that will make their way into several A6 cars and the A7 Sportback.
Those included in the list are the A6 sedan, A6 Avant, Allroad Quattro and A7 Sportbacks. Next spring U.K. customers can look forward to those cars sporting the option of Audi’s most powerful V6 diesel to date. The 3.0-liter bi-turbo oil burner will have 309 horsepower and 479 ft-lb of torque. That will be enough to propel the A6 Quattro from 0-60 mph in just 5.1 seconds, while the A6 Avant and A7 will get there in 5.3.
There isn’t any news on those cars making their way across the ocean just yet, but Audi did well in the U.K. last year, selling 14 percent more vehicles than they did the previous year. Audi says part of their plan to continue that upward trend is to invest more money in new products for what looks like a hungry market.
While this is little more than speculation, it doesn’t seem that outlandish that Audi might decide to bring those products to market in North America. An A6 diesel has long been rumored for the US, but the date keeps scooting out of sight.
Hopefully the new engine will sell well in the U.K. and encourage Audi to expand its distribution. That said, we won’t be surprised if it takes a long time or just doesn’t happen at all. Afterall, we’re still staring at the A1 with envy as the clock ticks by. There’s also already a diesel engine being sold in the US, albeit one with only 225 horsepower, sold in the Q7, and soon to be available in the Q5 CUV and A8 sedan.
Audi, which is looking to surpass BMW in the luxury vehicle segment is now aiming at the X6. BMW launched the X6 in 2008, and while it might not be a huge sales success, it has contributed enough to keep BMW SUV/CUV sales ahead of Audi.
So now, Audi is looking to take the challenge to BMW with their own X6 rival, which is expected to be called Q6. It will be more of a coupe off-roader (think a tall A7), and will lure those looking for something different.
According to Audi’s design boss Walter de’Silva, the design for this new vehicle is already signed off. Plus they are also ready for any future new competition from Bavaria. BMW is expected to launch the X4 in the next few years, and Audi is thus also planning for a possible Q4 model to stay competitive.
Currently, the best selling luxury SUV in Europe is the BMW X5. The Audi Q7 is in fifth-place.
[Source: Automotive News]
Audi is continuing to dump money into the development of its next generation crossovers, with the brand selling 155,000 Q5s globally last year along with 47,700 Q7s. ”There is no doubt…that crossovers are still selling like hotcakes even though the trend seems to be shifting toward more compact models,” says Audi chairman Rupert Stadler. The high-riding Q5 and Q7 will go on a serious diet for their next-generation.
The redesigned Q5 will drop 220 pounds from its curb weight and the Q7 will lose 650 pounds thanks to a new aluminium body. The Q5 will share the same platform as the all-new Porsche Cajun, set to arrive in 2016, with two new models including the Q4 and Q6. The Q6 will feature a steeply raked windshield and low-slung hatch that will take on the BMW X6. Design ideas for the Q4 are still up in the air regarding the shape of the SUV.
The three main ideas suggested include a hardened off-roader, a more luxurious Acura ZDX competitor or a high performance crossover. Power for both models will come from a new turbocharged 3.0-liter V6, with improved efficiency over the current supercharged motor by up to 20 percent. A plug-in hybrid may also be a possibility utilizing a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder with a 100-hp electric motor.
Thankfully the BMW M3 Pickup was just a joke and won’t ever make it into production, but has it started a trend? Perhaps. Exhibit two is this Audi Q7, which has been transformed into a type of German luxury El Camino.
With the wonders of photoshop, it’s not easy to say if this image is real or a fake either. Original? Yes. Stupid? Also a yes. But would you take it over a Chevy Avalanche?
Audi CEO Rupert Stadler has confirmed that the company will build a vehicle assembly plant in North America. In an interview with Automotive News, Stadler explained specific details about models, location and capacity will be made within three years. Audi may also be building a plant to specialize in the construction of engine and transmissions. ”It is totally clear that we need new production capacity in the U.S.,” Stadler told the trade publication. “The question only is when.”
Audi is reportedly considering new U.S production of a large coupe like crossover called the Q6. This vehicle will aim to take on the BMW X6. The Q6 will be based on the same platform as the Audi Q7 and Porsche Cayenne. The Q6 may be assembled on a new line at VW’s Chattanooga plant. North American built Audi’s will likely begin rolling off the line by 2014.
[Source: Automotive News]
Audi is planning on launching the Q2 and Q6 sport oriented SUVs by 2016. Along with the Q2 and Q6 will be the new Q4 and today’s Q3, Q5 and Q7 to complete Audi’s lineup.
“It’s clear that demand for SUVs and crossovers is still in an upswing phase and will remain so for some years to come. We want to make sure we have the coverage to satisfy it,” an Audi insider revealed.
The Q2 will be the smallest of the Audi SUV range, will sport a new four-wheel drive system and will compete with the Mini Countryman. The Q2 will start at £18,000 in the UK and will likely be powered by the engine found in the A1. The Q2 will be similar in size to the Nissan Juke which Audi has admitted is parked in the design studio as a reference. The Audi will also have unique body styling and a raised ride height for better ground clearance.
The all-new Q6 first revealed in April will be a direct competitor to the BMW X6 and will likely be launched in 2016 at the earliest. The Q6 will use the same platform as the Q5 and is part of a new engineering program aimed at lowering the weight of all future Audi models. The Q6 will receive an aluminum body coupled with composite plastic and carbonfibre elements.
Audi also expects fierce competition from the BMW X4 by the end of 2014 with the growing demand for upmarket SUVs. Audi also plans to launch a handful of new SUVs, with three sporty 4x4s in the next five years. The Q4 will be aimed at Chinese, Russian and North American markets. Accompanying the Q4 will be the Q3, Q5, Q7 and the upcoming Q2 and Q6 prepped to launch in 2016.
The Q4 will share design elements from the A5 sportback including a five-door body style and have flared wheel arches like the old RS6, according to Autocar. The interior will share many of the same design elements as the Q5 with a five-seat arrangment, with the central rear seat indended for occasional use.
Both diesel and gas engines will likely be available with the Q4 including a 2.0-liter turbodiesel (170-hp and 210-hp), as well as a 3.0-liter V6 diesel (240-hp). There will likely be a gasoline powered 3.2-liter V6 (270-hp) as well as high-performance S model variants.
All 2010 Q7s to receive mid-cycle update
For 2010 the Audi Q7 lineup of SUVs will receive several updates, as well as the addition of a new engine option.
Going on sale later this year, the 2010 Q7 will be available with two gasoline engines, as well as a clean diesel 3.0-liter TDI V6 powerplant. The move to bring clean diesel technology to North America comes as Audi has achieved Bin5 and ULEV II emissions standards in all 50 states.
The new TDI powerplant makes 225hp and 406 ft-lbs of torque at a whopping 23.2 lbs of boost. The engine itself is comprised of an iron block with aluminum heads and a variable turbine geometry turbo guarantees excellent delivery of power.
Performance is rated a 8.5 seconds to 60 mph, while the all-important fuel-economy is a big plus. The Q7 3.0 TDI is rated at 17/25 mpg (city/hwy) with a combined rating of 20 mpg. To put this into perspective, the V6-powered gasoline Q7 gets 14/20 mpg (or 16 mpg average), while the V8 gets 13/18 mpg or just 15 mpg average.
Audi says the Q7 3.0 TDI will be able to achieve 600 miles on a single tank and that when compared to the price of high octane gasoline (required on all Audi vehicles) the increased price of diesel will pay for itself over a few years due to the added fuel-economy. Other factors are sure to give added value to the diesels as well, such as a higher resale value and an expected tax credit from the federal government.
The new 2010 Q7 models (including the Q7 3.0 TDI) will be available starting in April.
GALLERY: 2010 Audi Q7 3.0 TDI
Keep reading after the jump for a full list of updates to the 2010 Audi Q7 models: