Audi to axe TT, expand Sportback range (and other plans revealed)

By Jason Woosey Time of article published May 24, 2019

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Ingolstadt - Just like the rest of the car making world, Audi is preparing for some big changes in the coming decade and its model line-up is set to change dramatically with the advent of the electric age, with some familiar models falling by the wayside.

Some of these plans were revealed by Audi’s Chairman of the Board of Management, Bram Schot, at the 130th Annual General Meeting on Thursday, and the future is certainly electric, with the German brand aiming to have 20 all-electric models on sale by 2025, accounting for 40 percent of its sales.

Schot stressed that there would be casualties of this product shake-up, and the first of these would be the TT coupe and roadster. The sports car range, he confirmed, would be replaced by a fully electric model. While there is no word on whether it will take the form of a low-slung two door, Schot did say that it would be an “emotive” model, and that it would compete in the same price range as the current TT.

The TT replacement would almost certainly be based around Volkswagen’s MEB electric vehicle architecture that’s set to underpin the ID3 and many other group products.

Schot hinted that the R8 could face the axe too, at least in its current form:

“For example, the R8 sports car. Do we need a successor with a combustion engine? Does this fit in with our vision? The discussion will give us an answer to that.”

Consider this a strong hint that Audi is working on an all-electric supercar, to replace the current Lamborghini V10-powered model.

The electrification wave looks set to hit the premium sedan market too, with Schot stating that the next A8 sedan might well be fully-electric.

“We are thinking about revolutionising the top-end class with a completely new concept for the A8,” he said.

Expect sportier (back) shapes

Audi isn’t losing focus on its conventional combustion engined range, however, but you can expect the shapes to shift a little.

The coupe-inspired Sportback body style, for instance, is set to become a lot more prevalent in the coming years. First in line is the Q3 Sportback, which will make its debut in July, but the Sportback concept will eventually be rolled out across the company’s entire spectrum, to include A and Q models, Schot confirmed.

All round, you can expect a more focused Audi range in future, as Schot puts it.

“Reality shows that we as a company have been involved in too many projects for several years. There will be many things in the future that we no longer do. Or things we do less. We will concentrate maximum resources on our key projects. This means less complexity in new models, less complexity in our range as a whole.

“We have eliminated almost one third of our engine-transmission combinations. And we continue to examine our portfolio for customer relevance,” he concluded.

IOL Motoring

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