During Audi‘s annual general meeting in Ingolstadt, CEO Rupert Stadler officially confirmed the new A8’s arrival in 2017, plus more than 20 new or upgraded models already set to be launched this year.
The 2017 A8 will be Ingolstadt’s first series-produced car capable of piloted driving. With the help of its traffic-jam pilot system, the A8 will be able to drive itself temporarily at speeds up to 60 km/h (37 mph).
Stadler mentioned that “by 2025, we will see fully automated driving.” Furthermore, the Audi CEO stated that starting in 2018, his company will “launch another electrified car each year,” with 2018 being the year in which they will debut a fully-electric large SUV with a range of over 500 km (310 miles).
This year, Audi plans to introduce more than 20 new or upgraded models, including the Q2 compact SUV – which will have its own SIM card with an unlimited data plan, making internet connectivity standard.
“Our model and technology initiative will ensure our growth of tomorrow,” said Stadler during his speech. “Electrification and digitization represent a historic shift. We will play a large part in shaping this change and will thus further enhance our strong position.”
Aside from the new SUVs (which includes the sporty SQ7 TDI and the Q7 e-tron quattro), the Ingolstadt-based manufacturer will be expanding the new generation A4 family, a model that’s yet to be launched in certain markets outside of Europe.
As for the faster S4 Sedan & Avant versions, they will be available for ordering starting with the middle of this year.
Note: Audi Prologue Concept pictured