Although the R8 is Audi’s flagship and a standard-bearer for “vorsprung durch technik”, it appears that the German company is considering a new top-of-the-line vehicle. Previous media reports were suggesting the A9, a vehicle that could take on the BMW 9-Series, but it appears that Audi has something else in mind: a Q9 super SUV.
According to Audi Chairman of the Board and CEO, Rupert Stadler, the German company wants to expand its SUV line because by 2020 the Q-models sales will account over 45 percent of sales. If it will receive a green light for production, the Audi Q9 could receive an e-tron version, meaning that the SUV will be greener than ever thanks to the plug-in hybrid drivetrain.
The Audi Q9 will take on SUVs such as the Range Rover Long Wheelbase or the new Bentley based on the EXP 9 F Concept, which will arrive in 2016. Moreover, the Q9 could receive the same modular large platform, dubbed PL38, that will be used by the next-generation Audi Q7.
The upcoming BMW X7 could also be a rival to the Audi Q9. The Q9 could use the 3.0-liter V6 TDI engine that powers the current Q7, but also the bigger 4.2-liter V8 TDI engine used by the Porsche Cayenne or the Volkswagen Touareg.
During the same interview, Rupert Stadler also killed the rumors regarding Audi’s version of the VW Up! city car saying that the company doesn’t need such as car due to the fact that they are satisfied with the A1 sales, 120,000 units.