Audi Admits V-10, W-12 Engines Likely Dead With Shift To Electrification

2 weeks ago by Adrian Padeanu 14

Audi e-tron Quattro

The V8 however, especially the diesel, is apparently here to stay.

Switching from Volvo where he served as senior vice president of R&D, Audi’s board member for technical development Peter Mertens sat down and had a chat with Automotive News about what the future holds for the four-ring company.

Needless to say, the electric push was the main topic, and he promised Audi will have three EVs on sale by 2020. We already know the identity of two, with the E-Tron crossover due next year set to be followed by the sleeker E-Tron Sportback in 2019.

The interview got even more interesting when the 56-year-old Audi official was asked about the company’s plan to axe up to 40 percent of its drive systems in the long run. He admitted some engine-gearbox combos will be eliminated, adding “entire engine families” might face the axe as well.

Audi A3 Sportback e-tron battery

In this day and age of downsizing, it comes as no surprise the most vulnerable engines are the biggest Audi has right now: the V10 in the R8 supercar and the mighty W12 reserved for the flagship A8. Peter Mertens rhetorically asked:

“Do we really need a V-10 and W-12 for the next generation of cars?”

While the future of these two engines seems to be uncertain, the smaller V8s – especially the TDI – will continue to exist for many years to come as Mertens can’t imagine a future without them:

“We have a very important group of customers that really wants eight-cylinder engines in larger vehicles. Will it exist forever? No, but [it will] for a rather long time.

While the diesel engine is here to stay for the time being at Audi, the same thing can’t be said about another premium marque part of the Volkswagen Group. Porsche is seriously taking into consideration dropping diesel engines after the end of the decade, so the next-gen Cayenne and Macan SUVs could be offered only with gasoline units, and augmented/extended range plug-in options.

Speaking of Porsche, the future is definitely electric as the Stuttgart-based marque has teamed up with Audi to work on a new Premium Platform Electric catering a wide variety of EVs. 60% of the total volume will consist of Audi cars, with Porsche taking the remaining 40%. Very few details are available at this point, but Mertens said focus will be on the segments where the A4 and A6 currently compete in.

You can read the full interview at the source link below to find out what Mertens had to say about level 4 autonomous driving and the Elaine concept shown last month at IAA.

Source: Automotive News


14 responses to "Audi Admits V-10, W-12 Engines Likely Dead With Shift To Electrification"

  1. Gazz says:

    The Audi 2.4L V8 diesel is currently under recall for excessive NOx..

    1. L'amata says:

      OOOooops! they forgot to Fix the Computer….

  2. Get Real says:

    And guess what else laggard OEMs, we don’t rider horses anymore either.

  3. James says:

    The first of the dinosaurs to go extinct.

    Who needs 12 cylinders in a light duty car anyway?!

  4. unlucky says:

    I feel like turbos killed V10s and V12s (and W12s).

    A turbo/supercharged V8 is all the power a street car needs. Heck, if it weren’t for power war and the weight of cars with all the crash protection we have now then we’d not have anything above a turbo 6-cylinder.

  5. ffbj says:

    Diesel is dead, who’s is going to buy those defunct pollution belching tubs? China wants to ban as does Europe. They never sold in the U.S. in great numbers.

    Saying they’ll be around for many years is just ignoring the obvious. Atm there are half a million sitting on lots in Europe that can’t be sold.

    1. trololo says:

      Sadly, a lot of people love diesel car in Europe (incentives + cheaper fuel in some countries).
      In fact, Audi car buyer (VW in general) don’t seem to care about pollution.
      They seem more concerned about being able to drive as fast as they can, and about impressing people, since having a VW car is a sign of wealth.

      By saying that V8 is here for a long time, Audi is expressing a wish, a wish to sell ICE engines as long as they can, cause it is their milk cow.

  6. CDAVIS says:

    It’s hard for me to imagine Audi surviving the transition to EV.

    The various Audi e-tron “concepts” if they were in production today would have a hard time competing with Tesla… that will be even more so when e-torn makes it into production a few years from now.

    1. L'amata says:

      If they ceased to exist , No one would miss them..

    2. trololo says:

      I would not bet on it. Not that I’m loving the brand, I’m smoking their fumes on a daily basis (no diesel gate here, no recall at all), but VW has a lot of cash, plus Qatar holding 24% of their shares.
      So they might be able to deal with the changes, like Microsoft dealt with their lack of vision about the Internet revolution: buying what they need to.

    3. Serial anti tesla troll thomas says:

      Competing with who? This company which can produce only 268 cars a month?
      I guess Tesla runs out of cash at same time as the etron arrives.

  7. trololo says:

    A commercial that says a lot about Audi:

  8. bogdan says:

    Audi Admits It’s Likely Dead With Shift To Electrification

    That’s what happens when you ride a dead horse.

  9. JimGord says:

    Dinosaur Diesels are dead.
    Electrics are the only way forward

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