AUDI Australia is “expecting growth” in 2020 because it prepares to launch greater than 21 new fashions and variants, having lastly overcome crippling homologation-related inventory provide bottlenecks and a stop-sale on two thirds of its Q7 giant SUV line-up.
Hailed as “the biggest year (of product launches) we’ve ever had in terms of sheer numbers” by Audi Australia product planning supervisor Peter Strudwicke, subsequent yr additionally guarantees brand-building alternatives caused by the introduction of the all-electric E-Tron and E-Tron Sportback SUVs.
Audi Australia can also be engaged on decreasing current lengthy delays between fashions happening sale in Europe and their arrival in Australian showrooms.
The firm’s 12-year profitable streak ended in 2017, when gross sales slumped 9.three per cent to 22,011 models.
In 2018 gross sales plunged one other 11.eight per cent to 19,416 deliveries and this yr up to now has been a massacre with 12,168 reported gross sales to the top of October representing a 25.6 per cent drop.
Recently launched volume-selling fashions such because the A1 mild hatch and Q3 small SUV have arrived too late in the yr to efficiently flip issues round, whereas reinstatement of in style V6 diesel Q7 variants occurred at a time when the large SUV would in any other case be getting into runout in preparation for the facelifted model that may come in autumn.
It has not been a simple three years for Audi’s German rivals both, with BMW recording a 15.7 gross sales decline in 2017, adopted by one other 2.four per cent drop in 2018 and flatlining this yr with a Zero.5 per cent uptick. Mercedes-Benz was up three.1 per cent in 2017 however fell again 13.1 per cent final yr and is 6.5 per cent down year-to-date.
In the identical timeframe, Australia’s general new light-vehicle market edged upward Zero.9 per cent in 2017 earlier than dropping three.Zero per cent in 2018 and accelerating its downward trajectory with an eight.Zero per cent decline thus far this yr.
Speaking with GoAuto on the current A6 government sedan launch in Adelaide, Audi Australia company communications government Shaun Cleary stated this yr’s stoop was compounded by provide bottlenecks and new-model launch delays associated to homologation for European WLTP (Worldwide Harmonised Light Vehicle Test Procedure) gasoline consumption and emissions testing that affected a number of European manufacturers.
He stated one other vital impression got here from the stop-sale of well-liked three.Zero-litre turbo-diesel variants of the Q7 giant SUV whereas engineers labored on a treatment for the emissions discount system being unable to detect whether or not the AdBlue tank had been full of the right answer.
“We’re getting to a point now where we’ve got more certainty,” he stated.
“It’s totally dictated by supply … We’d had A1 and Q3 not being available for sale for nine months … Then when Q7 was also on stop-sale it has contributed to that dip.”
On a extra constructive observe, Mr Cleary added that 2020 is “shaping up as a really exciting year because of the models that have just arrived, but also because of what’s coming”.
First up would be the Q3 Sportback small SUV together with the facelifted Q7 and its high-performance SQ7 variant in March or April, adopted by a fleshing out of the A6 vary with a front-drive entry-level choice, plus the Allroad diesel crossover and S6 efficiency variants, in addition to the associated S7 Sportback.
Also early in the second quarter would be the SQ8 and facelifted TT RS plus the return of the RS3 hyper hatch that lately returned to manufacturing following an extended WLTP-related delay.
Later in the second quarter would be the facelifted A4 and A5, with the fire-breathing RS6 Avant uber-wagon and its RS7 fastback sibling arriving mid-year, joined by a rear-drive model of the R8 supercar.
The third quarter will deliver but extra high-performance mannequin launches, with scorching SUVs comprising the SQ5 and RS Q8 plus the RS Q3 in each wagon and Sportback varieties, to not point out the autobahn-storming S8 limousine and RS4 Avant wagon.
Audi Australia will even launch the E-Tron and E-Tron Sportback electrical SUV duo in the second half.
“We’re certainly expecting growth … there’s huge potential,” stated Mr Cleary.
“It’s going to be one of the strongest, if not the strongest product years we’ve ever had. If you combine that with huge brand building opportunities like the E-Tron in the second half, it’s a very exciting year coming up.”
Mr Cleary additionally confirmed that the corporate was engaged on narrowing the hole between European and Australian new-model launches.
“Launch timing for Australia, in relation to Europe, has been a gap of about six months but (recently) it’s been a lot longer than that, probably more than 12 months for some models,” he stated.
“In recent history a lot more of that has come a lot more into alignment … What you’ll see over the next year – and it will happen gradually – is that we will get much closer to that six-month delay.”
A raft of plug-in hybrid fashions might comply with the pure-electric E-Tron into Australian showrooms, which Mr Cleary described as “inevitably” a part of the longer term line-up and at present beneath analysis.
So far the corporate has bought small numbers of plug-in hybrids right here in the form of the A3 E-tron small hatch and Q7 E-Tron giant SUV.
“For now, the focus for us is on E-Tron and E-Tron Sportback,” stated Mr Cleary.
What’s coming from Audi in 2020:*
|A6 40 TFSI, A6 Allroad TDI, S6, S7, SQ8, RS3, TT RS facelift||Early Q2|
|Q3 Sportback, Q7/SQ7 facelift||March/April|
|A4/A5 facelift||Late Q2|
|RS6, RS7, RS4 Avant, R8 V10 RWD||Mid-year|
|Q3, RSQ3, RSQ3 Sportback, RSQ8, S8, SQ5 TDI||Q3|
|E-tron, E-tron Sportback||H2|