Tesla is picking up more steam in the automotive market, and that trend seems to be ticking up even more as the release of the Model X approaches. Wherever there’s success others will begin encroaching to get a piece of the pie, which is exactly what Audi is up to. The German luxury automaker is reportedly working on an all-electric sport utility model.
We won’t have to wait long to see the new vehicle, according to a recent report from Automotive News Europe. The model will break cover for the 2015 Frankfurt Auto Show. Audi has already stated that the vehicle will ride on the Volkswagen GEN II MLB modular-longitudinal platform. Supposedly, the vehicle will have a driving range of over 300 miles, which would make it an incredibly strong contender for the Tesla Model X.
Audi is rumored to be doing one better than Tesla by considering the possibility of offering a plug-in gasoline-electric version of the new SUV model, plus a hydrogen fuel-cell powertrain option. The Volkswagen Group has been one of several car companies that seem resistant to forging ahead only with electrified powertrains, a fact some have said is hampering their abilities to really contend with Tesla.
The upcoming SUV will be important for Audi and the Volkswagen Group since it’s supposed to launch a new design that will be applied to future fully-electric and plug-in hybrid models throughout the company’s lineup. Exactly what that means is unknown.
The anticipated launch date of the new model is sometime by 2018, giving the Model X is a sizable lead. Some are speculating that the name of the vehicle will be the Audi Q6 e-tron, although the company hasn’t confirmed those suspicions.
According to Rupert Stadler, the CEO of Audi, production will surpass 10,000 units. He said that going with a lower total volume would make the project not even worth the effort.