Audi planning three EVs by 2020, autonomous car in the pipeline – report

Audi planning three EVs by 2020, autonomous car in the pipeline – report

Audi is looking to an electrified future, with the luxury marque’s CEO revealing it aims to have three fully-electric models on the market by the end of the decade.

Last week a source within Audi told Reuters the company is planning for electric vehicles (EVs) to account for a quarter of its sales by 2025.

In an interview published over the weekend, Rupert Stadler, Audi’s CEO, told German newspaper Heilbronner Stimme the luxury car maker is not only planning an EV assault, but also looking into autonomous cars and digital services.

Stadler said the company plans to set up a subsidiary, named SDS Company, which will develop a fully-autonomous vehicle.

“This is [a] robot car that may not even need a steering wheel or pedals, so it’s ideal for urban traffic,” he said.

According to Audi’s CEO, the company is still looking for joint venture partners who can help with the development of the technology.

Audi e-tron quattro concept

Above: The Audi e-Tron Quattro SUV concept

While pursuing these new strategies, Audi will reduce complexity in other areas, such as its model line-up.

“I think we would barely lose any customers (if we drop the three-door A3),” he said – referring to the three-door A3 hatch that isn’t sold here.

“We’d rather invest the money that is freed up in new models and other derivatives.”

One of Audi’s new EV models is likely to be the Q6 e-Tron SUV in 2018, a production version of the e-Tron Quattro SUV (pictured above) revealed at last year’s Frankfurt motor show.

Last month parent company Volkswagen revealed its plans to release more than 30 new electric and electrically-assisted vehicles by 2025. Skoda is also reportedly working on an all-electric SUV – likely based on the Vision S concept – for a 2020 debut.

Audi’s EV models, along with the upcoming electric models coming from Volkswagen, are likely to be built on the group’s ‘MEB’ modular electric component set.

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