Audi is ready to release an influx of new models in the local market. Having only been able to roll out the updated A6 in 2020 before the Covid-19 pandemic wreaked havoc in the motoring industry, the German carmaker has announced its jam-packed plans for the next 18 months.
Audi’s latest offering of its large SUV, the Q7, will also be released later in the year alongside the updated SQ7. Also in 2020, the SQ8 will be added to the Q8 range, Audi’s coupe-styled SUV that made its debut in 2019.
One of South Africa’s favourite sedans, the A4, will be rolled out alongside the S4, while its coupe siblings, the A5 and S5, will follow suit. Following the release of the new A7 towards the end of last, the latest S7 reincarnation is set for the local market before the end of the year.
A fest of Audi high-performance models is destined for South Africa in the first quarter of 2021. The planned line-up includes the TT RS, the RS Q3 and RS Q3 Sportback, the R8, the RS4 Avant, the RS5, RS6 Avant and RS7, the RS Q8 and the S7. Later in 2021, Audi plans to unveil the new A3, the updated Q5, the facelifted Q2 and the electric e-tron in South Africa.
“Once all these models have been launched, Audi will have the youngest vehicle portfolio in the premium segment and that is very exciting,’’ says Tarryn Knight, Audi South Africa’s head of Marketing, Product and Public Relations.
Although consumers are feeling the pinch amid the Covid-19 financial crunch and new car sales will struggle to recover for most of the year, it’s not all doom and gloom for the premium brand. Asif Hoosan, head of Sales, Operations and Volume Planning, says expectations are that many local costumers under financial pressure will opt to stay in the Audi family by buying down.
“Buying down has been the norm for quite a few years now and we expect that to rapidly accelerate. It is forecasted that 79% of buying down will occur in the A0 and A segments in 2020, a dramatic rise from the 56% in 2019. As far as premium to volume goes, in 2019 one premium car was sold for every seven others. In 2020, it is predicted that the ratio will be one to eight. That is still a rather decent outlook for premium products,” says Hoosan.