Audi could be getting even more diverse with its powertrains for the A6, A8 and Q7, moving beyond offering just gas- and diesel-powered models and adding plug-in hybrid variants of the three luxury vehicles. The report comes from Indian Autos Blog, which spoke to Dr. Ulrich Hackenberg, Audi's research and design chief, who confirmed the PHVs.
The next-generation Q7, due in 2015, will be the pioneer for the full-size PHV movement from Audi, although the A3 Sportback E-Tron (shown above) will precede it. The move toward plug-ins by Audi is a big step, as the German marque has stayed quite firmly in the diesel camp, outside of its racing efforts. It's developed a few E-Tron cars over the years, including a version based on the R8, although it wasn't until recently that production of the electric sports car became serious again.
It's believed that this hesitance to really dive into the PHV market is why Audi sacked former research and design boss Wolfgan Dürheimer, with IAB speculating that his approach was too conservative.
Naturally, we're looking to hear from you. Should Audi just leave plug-in hybrids alone and continue plugging along with its excellent diesel offerings, or are more E-Tron products necessary to the brand's survival? Let us know what you think in the informal poll below.
|Populate with plug-ins.||2045 (36.4%)|
|Definitely diesel.||3179 (56.6%)|
|I'm not sure.||395 (7.0%)|