Markus Deussman drops a big hint on the rumoured Audi Q1

Audi plans to have 30 electrified models in its product range including 20 full-electric vehicles by 2025 and hopes to derive 40 per cent of its sales from them. There is no doubt then that every class of Audi car will be fully electrified in this decade. By end of this decade, the Audi A4 and A6 will become fully electric, company boss Markus Deussman told the media earlier this year.

In an edition last year, Germany’s Autobild Magazine carried a scoop story on an electric Audi Q1 (Audi Q1 e-tron), and it was speculated that this would be one of the smallest members of the e-tron group. The Instagram embed is from the artist Larson who posted the cover photo of the magazine. Model plans change, and unfortunately, even before its birth, it seems that Audi has aborted plans for a product smaller than the Q2.

No plans to go below Q2, says Audi’s CEO

In an interview to Autocar UK in February, Deussman said that the company in the future will offer models like the Q2, but that may be its starting point in the range as it has no plans to do anything smaller. Speaking to another publication (WirtschaftsWoche of Germany), Deussman said that Audi will tend to concentrate on larger vehicles which comes with better margins.

Audi has launched the e-tron electric SUV and e-tron Sportback and most recently the e-tron GT. Taking the e-tron into the compact SUV segment will be the Q4 e-tron, which will be revealed on April 14 in two body styles – a boxy SUV and a coupe-SUV. The Q4 e-tron will be the first Audi model to be built on Volkswagen’s MEB platform that is dedicated to electric vehicles. In 2022, Audi will shift to the advanced PPE Architecture (co-developed with Porsche) to introduce the Audi Q6 e-tron.

2017 Audi Q2 sketch
Audi is willing to go down only till the Q2 segment. Parent company VW is building up an affordable EV lineup, joined by group companies Skoda and Seat, and Audi would rather play in the premium segments. Pictured is an official sketch of the Audi Q2.

The MEB on paper is quite a versatile architecture as Volkswagen has planned a wide range of vehicles from ID.3 hatchback to ID.6 7-seat SUV. If Audi wants to leverage the economies of scale to expand, it certainly can, however, there could have been the case of severe cannibalization among the group companies. At a time when VW, Skoda, Seat and Cupra are targeting mass market EVs, it seems to be a case where Audi would rather maintain its premium positioning as an inspirational brand, and in the process have existing VW owners eventually upgrade to an Audi.

Instead, Autocar UK reports that Audi could re-introduce the A2 nameplate in a city-friendly EV. It is expected in 2026 with a 30,000 EUR starting price and a range of around 250-300 km on the WLTP cycle.

What is the release date of the Audi Q1?

Unfortunately, as indirectly confirmed by Audi’s boss, there will not be an Audi Q1 in the foreseeable future.

Featured image: Audi