Published on December 29th, 2013 | by Daniel Sherman Fernandez0
Audi Moving Ahead With 22 Billion Budget
Audi, the world’s second-biggest maker of luxury cars after BMW, plans to spend 22 billion euros (USD30.3 billion) through 2018, pushing models such as electric autos to gain the top spot in the premium segment. About 15.4 billion euros, or 70 percent of the total, will be invested to develop new models and technology, Audi said in a statement this week.
Audi targets selling 2 million cars and SUVs annually after achieving a goal of delivering 1.5 million autos in 2013, two years ahead of its original plan.
“We are now decisively steering toward our next milestone,” CEO Rupert Stadler said in the statement. “This is why we’re keeping our foot on the gas pedal regarding investments.”
The budget is equivalent to spending 4.4 billion euros a year, an increase from a previous plan that called for investing 4.3 billion euros annually on new models and expanding production capacity. The Volkswagen Group unit aims to overtake BMW as the world’s biggest luxury-car producer by the end of the decade. Audi plans to increase its product range to 60 models by 2020 from about 49 currently.
The third generation of its TT coupe is scheduled to go on sale next year, joining newly introduced electric- and natural gas-powered variants of the A3 Sportback, the carmaker said.
Audi will also add to its SUV lineup with the subcompact Q1 in 2016. To meet anticipated demand for its vehicles, the manufacturer is adding production in China, Brazil and Mexico, in addition to upgrading its German plants.
“With this investment program we are launching our next stage of growth,” Audi CFO Axel Strotbek said in the statement. Audi’s expansion is part of Volkswagen’s 84.2 billion-euro investment program to beat Toyota Motor Corp. and General Motors in global sales.