Audi to kill off its TT while R8’s future remains uncertain
Entry two-door coupe and convertible ends after three generations
Audi chief executive Bram Schot told shareholders at its annual general meeting on Thursday that the TT’s low volumes were in the way of a new strategy to launch at least 20 new BEVs by 2025
Audi’s entire sportscar lineup has been whittled down to just one car, the R8 junior supercar, after it confirmed today that it was killing off the TT.
And even the R8 is skating on thin ice...
The car that arrived with a design bang will go out with a whimper after three generations, with Audi’s board suggesting it will replace it with an “emotive” battery-electric vehicle (BEV) below the upcoming e-tron GT.
The TT will give way to Schot’s vision of having the strongest range of BEVs in the premium segment, which will likely include an all-electric version of the next A8 limousine, which may even arrive in time for its facelift in two years.
“In the medium term we want to have the strongest range of electric models among premium competitors,” Schot said. “The next generation of the Audi A8 might well be all-electric. Nothing has been decided yet, but I can well imagine it,” he said.
That wave of electrification will mean Audi is targeting a million plug-in hybrids by 2025 and more than 30 electrified cars and SUVs, accounting for 40 percent of its total volumes.
Schot’s chief financial officer, Alexander Seitz, argued that though the EVs might lose money on paper, they were far more valuable than their face value.
Every EV Audi sold would generate credits in China and California to offset the CO2 emissions fines from their combustion-engined cars, and even if they built more EVs than they expected, they could sell off their zero-emission credits to struggling companies, like Tesla has done for years.
“CO2 credits are hard cash in today’s world,” Seitz said.
“As finance chief, I am already looking forward to every electric car sold, even if their profitability cannot yet achieve that of conventional vehicles.”
It’s also pushing suppliers to lower their own CO2 figures, with plans to make Audi’s factories CO2 neutral five years ahead of schedule. “A better CO2 footprint starts with our suppliers. We are making this into the key element of supplier agreements,” Schot said.