Audi Quatro crossover concept car (Daniel Mears / The Detroit News)
Volkswagen AG’s Audi displayed a prototype that previews design changes for the luxury line and made the North American introduction of a model the company is looking to extend U.S. sales gains.
The Audi Allroad Shooting Brake Show Car made its debut at the North American International Auto Show on Monday. With the concept car, “you get an idea of the new Audi TT,” Ulrich Hackenberg, a member of Audi’s board and in charge of development of the brand, said at a news conference. The next-generation TT is expected to be introduced late this year as a 2015 model.
Allroad is a hybrid crossover with two electric motors and Audi estimates it can achieve more than 120 miles a gallon. The concept is 4.6-feet tall and 13.78 feet long, according to the automaker.
Audi is also using the show to highlight the Q3 sport-utility vehicle that goes on sale in the U.S. in the third quarter.
“Audi intends to make a lot of noise in the entry-level luxury segment,” Scott Keogh, president of Audi of America, said at the news conference. “The time is right for Audi to make this move.”
The brand sold 158,061 vehicles in the U.S. last year, its fourth consecutive annual record. Entry-level luxury is considered a growing part of the segment.
“For Audi, to pick up some of that market, the Q3 is very important,” said Jeff Schuster, an analyst with LMCAutomotive.