Audi Making Its Move From Behind
Heavy investment aimed at surpassing BMW as world's largest luxury brand
The move was kicked off with an announcement of an investment of about $10.5 billion to finance the research and development of eight new models, plus plant upgrades and infrastructure improvement. About 80 percent of that $10.5 billion allotment will go to the new vehicles, according to the company.
Of course, looking deeper into the strategy reveals that Audi's plans to take over the top luxury spot from BMW is simply a steppingstone in VW's larger plan to dominate Toyota, since the Audi brand is owned by Volkswagen Group.
The new models will increase Audi's stable from 34 to 42 vehicles (of the new rides, one will be the A1 subcompact and another the A7, a competitor sedan to Bimmer's 6-Series and the Mercedes CLS Class), and the plan is to have all new vehicles ready to go by 2015.
Neither Mercedes nor BMW is sitting on its laurels, of course -- both plan on their own improvements. Audi, though, thinks that its heavy investment in improving existing engine technology, as well as alternative powertrains, will eventually give them the edge -- and bragging rights as the world's top luxury marque.
(Source: Detroit Free Press.)
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