Audi is getting ready to make a huge transition.
Audi has been pushing into electric vehicles hard, and now it appears that its bread and butter sedans, the Audi A4 and A5 are scheduled to go pistonless. According to Audi's CEO, Markus Duesmann, in an interview with Germany's Manager Magazin, the sedan and coupe will enter a new generation in 2023 with piston engines but will include electric versions in preparation for an all-electric future that could arrive as early as 2030. Duesman doesn't believe hybrid technology has a future, which is an odd assertion as Audi's hybrid models sell well, and we're still some way from cost parity between electric cars and traditional gas powered vehicles.
The equivalence in cost between all-electric and gas-powered cars is the tipping point fpr an all-electric world. Duesmann clearly believes that's coming, and along with Volkswagen AG's CEO Herbert Diess, he now thinks a quick transition from piston power to all-electric is going to be key for the German brand. Audi is already pushing hard with its all-electric e-tron line and using Volkswagen AG's resources for its Artemis project.
Project Artemis is planned as an all-electric and “highly automated” car. “With 75 planned electric models by 2029, the current electric initiative at the Volkswagen Group naturally ties up all our capacities,” Duesmann said earlier in the year.
Duesmann says that the mysterious ultra-secretive high-tech Artemis project shouldn't be above the A8 sedan or the Q7 SUV in the project range. Artemis should debut at the Munich Motor Show this fall and start production in 2024. Looking at the e-tron range and plans for the midsize sedans to go all-electric, Audi could be planning Artemis to be its more accessible and affordable line. Either way, it's all adding up to an exit plan from building combustions engine cars for Audi by 2030. In fact, it looks like Audi is betting the farm on an all-electric future even harder than the Volkswagen brand.