Cue More Audi Crossovers

#Audi, #Q5

Q4: Audi is currently evaluating three different approaches to the Q4 theme: an elegant premium two-door crossover; an overtly sporty model complete with flared fenders, extended sills, and various drag-cutting addenda; and a more overt off-roader with butch body kit and, probably, with height-adjustable air suspension as part of the Drive Select menu. Engine offerings would mirror those of the Q6. Timing is early 2017.

Q1: For the smallest Q, planners from Ingolstadt again are evaluating three options. The quickest course of again would be to put a taller, crossover body on the four-door A1 Sportback Quattro. This could be rushed into production by 2013. Alternately, Audi could develop an all-new compact crossover that would use the advanced modular MQB architecture pioneered by the next A3. Using the MQB architecture would mean waiting until 2015. A third possibility is to use the revived Audi A2, due in 2016, which would pave the way for an uncommonly light, aluminum-intensive high-roof model. At the moment, the second or third options appear to have the edge.

The Porsche connection
Another factor driving Audi's Q models is their importance to Porsche. The one-time sports-car-maker plans a mushrooming lineup of high-roof activity vehicles. You already know that the Cayenne and the Q7 are related. Next comes the Cajun (Cayenne junior), which shares the greenhouse and the body structure of the current Q5 but gets its own body panels. The Cajun goes on sale in 2013, at a planned 35,000 units per year. The two-door Audi Q4 will share its DNA with the door-door shooting brake version of the Porsche Cajun.

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