SUV

Audi Says ‘Yes’ to Q9 Flagship; ‘No’ to City Car

A new flagship is under consideration, but there'll be nothing beneath the A1.

Audi plans to expand its lineup from 49 to 60 models by 2020 as it aims for two million annual vehicle sales, but the A1 subcompact will be as small as Audi will go. There will be no four ring variant of VW’s Up minicar, but at the other end of the spectrum the German carmaker is looking to add a Q9 SUV as its new flagship. Speaking to Car Magazine at the Beijing Motor Show, Audi CEO Rupert Stadler said: "We want to expand the SUV side of the business.

By 2020, our Q-models will account for over 45% of sales.” The R8 is Audi’s current flagship, but a new range topper in the form of a super-luxury SUV is very much under consideration. Range Rover offers the LWB variant, BMW recently confirmed the X7, while Bentley, Lamborghini and Maserati are already working on their own high-end SUVs. Yet Audi insists the Q9 will not come about “because of what our rivals are doing.” If green-lit, the Q9 would be offered with a plug-in hybrid option, as Audi works towards rolling out its e-tron system across its entire range this decade.

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