Audi denies developing own variant of VW Up, may build entry-level SUV

Article by Christian Andrei, on January 25, 2011

Audi CEO Rupert Stadler said there are no plans to create a version of the forthcoming VW Up minicar and that instead, it may build a new entry-level SUV.

There have been media speculations that Audi is developing its own variant of the Up under the code-name "Audi AO." But this has been denied by Stadler who told Automotive News Europe that he “cannot imagine” having a new model that’s slotted below its current A1 entry-level car.

VW Skoda unit aims to develop a version of the Up city car. Stadler said that there’s potential for a small SUV below the Q5 and the new Q3, which will be launched later this year. He also described the Q family to have potential but is not yet complete.

Stadler said that the company has yet to come to a decision on whether to launch a car that might be named Q1. Audi currently has 37 model variants, with plans to raise this number to 42 by 2015 as part of its goal of beating BMW AG as the biggest luxury car maker in the world.

Stadler is confident that there will be demand for the A1, which had its launching last year. He said that it appears that the Brussels factory will operate at its full 120,000-unit capacity this year. He said that this will happen even if Audi currently only sells a two-door version of the A1.

Stadler said that Audi will not offer the A1 in the U.S. because it doesn’t have the capacity to do so. He said that Audi chooses to take advantage of the full market potential for the cars it currently sells in the U.S. before it decides to launch new models. [via autonews - sub. required]

Topics: audi, vw, vw up, suv

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