Audi has reportedly secured trademarks that could be applied to future crossovers. Autocar reports that Audi trademarked SQ2, SQ4, and Q9, badges that are expected to be used for a trio of new models due in the next two or three years.
Although automakers routinely trademark names even if they have no plans of launching a vehicle with that name, these Audi badges correlate with our expectations for the future of Audi's Q crossover range. As we reported in 2012, Audi board members recognize that the SUV and crossover segment is growing, and want the German automaker to increase its offerings accordingly. Still, there's no guarantee these trademark filings will lead to actual production vehicles.
In keeping with the pattern of the 2014 Audi SQ5, the SQ2 and SQ4 monikers would likely be applied to higher-performance versions of crossovers by the names Q2 and Q4. Previously, Audi had planned to launch a compact crossover named the Q2 that would be inspired by the two-door Crosslane Coupe concept shown at the 2012 Paris auto show. However, now that Audi has revealed plans to build a small crossover called the Q1 (teased in the above photo), it seems the Q2 has been renamed.
The Audi SQ4 would be based on the proposed Q4, which was reportedly planned to be similar to the Land Rover Range Rover Evoque, as well as the forthcoming BMW X4. However, European correspondent Georg Kacher reported in May 2013 that the Q4 was unlikely to be approved for production. Audi officials apparently though it was too much of a niche proposition between the existing Q3 and Q5 crossovers.
A similar fate has also been reported for the Q9, despite the fact that Audi has apparently trademarked the name. Once referred to as the Q8, the Q9 would be a high-end luxury SUV based on the next-generation Audi Q7. According to Kacher's most recent report, however, "The Q9 won't happen because it would be too similar in off-road character to the Q7."