That's why the German automaker has just confirmed that it will proceed with production of the oft-rumored Q1 crossover. The new line will form just one of 11 new models which Audi aims to launch by the end of the decade, and will be built starting in 2016 at the main plant in Ingolstadt where Audi currently makes the A3, A4 and A5.
Audi isn't saying much else about the Q1, confirming only that it will be based on a modular transverse-engine platform. But contrary to the brand's Quattro-centric image, it has been rumored to be offered in front-drive form only. One way or another, the business case for expanding Audi's crossover range is as suitably rock solid: The Q family accounts for over a quarter of Audis sold worldwide, with the Q5 accounting for over half of that to stand as the most popular in the range.
Audi decides on development of Q1 as a new member of the Q family
- Production of the new compact SUV as of 2016 at the plant in Ingolstadt
- Audi CEO Rupert Stadler: "The Q1 is a key component of our growth strategy."
- Chairman of the General Works Council, Peter Mosch, welcomes the decision
There is to be an addition to Audi's Q model family. The Board of Management and the Works Council of AUDI AG today announced that a new model will roll off the assembly lines in Ingolstadt as of 2016: the Q1.
"The Audi Q1 is part of our broad-based SUV strategy. It is designed on the basis of the modular transverse engine concept and will round off our Q series at the bottom end," stated Rupert Stadler, Chairman of the Board of Management of AUDI AG. As an attractive entry into the Q family, the new model will make a strong contribution to the company's ongoing growth and will strengthen its international competitiveness. Audi is continuing its model offensive with the Q1; by 2020, the automaker will expand its product range from the current 49 to more than 60 models. By then, Audi will reach total unit sales of more than two million automobiles each year.
The decision to produce the new model will help to secure utilization of capacity at the main plant in Ingolstadt over the long term. At this site, Audi produces models in the A and B segments, namely the A3 and A3 Sportback and the A4/A5 family. Peter Mosch, Chairman of the General Works Council, welcomes the decision: "This is a clear commitment to Ingolstadt as a production site. We will continue to make all efforts to develop the plant even further as the leading technological site of the Audi Group." The decision on the new model is regarded as proof that employee codetermination secures jobs and that the internationalization of the Audi group is not taking place at the expense of the sites in Germany.
The Q family currently comprises the Audi Q3, RS Q3, Q5, SQ5 and Q7. The Q5 is the global market leader in its direct competitive environment. This year, Audi had already delivered 194,430 units of the Q5 to customers by the end of October, which is 17 percent more than in the prior-year period. Approximately 230,000 units of this model are planned to be built in 2013, which is more than half of the total Q volume. The proportion of the company's total production volume accounted for by SUVs will be about 28 percent this year, and is planned to rise to more than 35 percent by 2020. Overall, Audi has produced and delivered to customers more than 1.5 million automobiles of the Q family since the market launch of the first SUV in 2006.