German car manufacturer Audi is preparing for production of the new fully electric SUV. Although the Audi e-tron quattro concept presented at the Frankfurt Motor Show in 2015 is very similar to final production version and production is said to only begin in 2018, company is already making necessary preparations. Introduction of the new car into the market will require changes in several plants across Europe.
The new purely electric driven SUV is going to be built in Brussels that currently is manufacturing small A1 hatchback. Production of the A1 will be moved from Brussels to Martorell in Spain and production of the Audi Q3 crossover will be moved from Spain to Győr, Hungary. These are a lot of changes to manufacturing network, but Audi says it is a good and needed decision.
Rupert Stadler, Chairman of the Board of Management of AUDI AG, said: “The new model distribution will enhance our production efficiency and strengthen all of the sites involved. It will allow us to utilize further synergies within the Volkswagen Group and to bundle key competencies”.
These changes are needed because Brussels will also be making batteries for Audi electric vehicles. These batteries are one of the most impressive parts of the new SUV, as it will be capable of driving more than 500 kilometres on one charge and will have a quick charging function. Furthermore, this electric SUV will be sporty and exiting to drive and will fit between the Audi Q7 and the Audi Q5 in Audi’s model range. Brussels plant will become the most important one for electric mobility at the Volkswagen Group.
Audi is hoping the new SUV will compete well against competitors, main of which is Tesla Model X. It is evident that future belongs to electric cars and more and more companies will have to find ways to enter this market segment. This also shows how international automotive industry is. None of the plants involved are in Germany, which allows company to use qualified workforce all around Europe.