The Audi management board have now vowed that the brand will recover this year 2019 from the impact of the new emissions (WLTP) test that led to a drastic profit and sales drop for them in the year 2018.
At Audi’s 2019 press conference, Alexander Seitz – the company’s finance boss, says that they are better prepared for WLTP emissions legislation second round and that they aim for all their powertrain by 2019 ending to have general operating permits altogether.
Audi will be able to reduce emissions of its fleet by meeting up with all the new regulations alongside the simplification of its current product portfolio. Seitz is claiming that their new plans will help the brand to distance itself finally from the Dieselgate scandal of Volkswagen Group which had since been having a long-term impact on Audi.
Audi is focusing more on electric vehicles in its 2019 transformation plan
This Audi’s new transformation plans for the years to come is clearly fueled by the serious need to meet up with the continually tight restrictions being placed on CO2 emissions because of the recent environmental concerns. The company now has some set goals that include rolling out thirty new EVs by the end of 2025 and also making all of Audi’s plant to be CO2-neutral by that time. This plan is, of course, part of an even larger electrification programme that has been set up within its parent company – Volkswagen Group, that will eventually result in the production and unveiling of close to 70 electric vehicle models all across its entire group of brands by the year 2030.
Bram Schot, Audi’s CEO was asked in a recent interview whether this point in time is actually right for the company’s bold move towards massive investment in electric vehicle technologies, he said that they have done their surveys and gotten some customers’ feedback which actually suggests that;
"60-70% of drivers of electric cars are loyal to electrification"
and this same response applies to Audi’s new E-Tron electric SUV which overall has been overwhelmingly positive for the brand so far. Meaning that there are too many indicators for success in their massive shift of focus to electric vehicles and its technologies.
2019 Audi E-Tron first drive review
Also, in this same interview, Seitz made it clear in his statement that a horrible event or experience like the previous Dieselgate “will never, ever happen again”.
From the current workflow and schematics adopted by Audi, it is very clear that the brand’s multi-person checking system has been strengthened for each of its new vehicles and in the same vein, the internal documentation process has also been tightened up more than before. All these are clear indicators that the CEO is absolutely right for his assurance of never again re-occurrence of an event like Dieselgate.
Audi has currently paid a fine that is close to ₦328 billion (£683 million) to the German government as well as bought back/fixed about 85% of its vehicles that were affected by the widely-spread emissions scandal.
All these steps and plans by Audi are obvious bold moves set out by the company to not only revive the brand’s name but to also achieve a “rebirth” of the entire company altogether and hit good sales/market figures in the year 2019.
Will Audi really be able to execute all of its 2019 transformation plans and achieve all of these goals?
No one can be sure yet as the year is still at its beginning, we all have to wait till the mid-year periods before jumping at assumptions for now.
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