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Audi Q1: Honey, I shrunk the luxo SUV

One day: Audi has confirmed the compact Q1 soft-roader will make it into production in 2016.

A1-based soft-roader confirmed to join Audi’s product line-up

3 Dec 2013

AUDI will expand into yet another niche, confirming overnight that the compact Q1 luxury soft-roader will go into production within three years.

The tiny Audi A1/Volkswagen Polo-based SUV – still to be seen in the metal after Audi released a rendered sketch of what the production version will look like – will create a new entry-level model that will attempt to cash in on the success of the Q5, the German car-maker’s best-selling model in Australia.

“The Audi Q1 is part of our broad-based SUV strategy,” Audi chairman Rupert Stadler said in a statement announcing the model’s boardroom approval.

“It is designed on the basis of the modular transverse engine concept and will round off our Q series at the bottom end.

“As an attractive entry into the Q family, the new model will make a strong contribution to the company’s ongoing growth and will strengthen its international competitiveness.” The single teaser image shows a fastback coupe-like sweep to the roofline, plumped wheelarches featuring blacked-out details that add to the appearance of height, and a tight glasshouse that looks stretched thanks to blacked-out central pillars.

The front appears to deviate from the traditional flat-nosed, two-dimensional trapezoidal grille to feature a more 3D, slatted look that gives an appearance of width.

Drivetrains are expected to pick from a three-cylinder turbocharged petrol unit, through to a plug-in hybrid system in development for the upcoming A3 e-tron.

The Q1 forms an aggressive new-model push by the company, with the goal of expanding from its current spread of 46 models to more than 60 by 2020. Audi has also set that year as the goal for selling more than two million vehicles globally.

Audi is continuing its model offensive with the Q1 by 2020, the automaker will expand its product range from the current 49 to more than 60 models. By then, Audi will reach total unit sales of more than two million automobiles each year.

Last year, Audi sold almost 1.5 million vehicles worldwide.

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