AUBURN HILLS, MI – Audi is joining other German automakers in the effort to eliminate exhaust emissions, promising to bring an electric model to market in the next 10 years. Rupert Stadler, Audi’s chairman and chief executive, said in an interview with German weekly Welt am Sonntag that he expects battery technology to dominate in the coming five to 10 years, according to www.news.com.
“By then we will offer cars without exhaust emissions,” Reuters quoted Stadler as saying. “Electric cars offer great opportunities, which we have already seized on.”
Reducing vehicle emissions is a chief concern for automakers in Germany. BMW recently showed off a hydrogen-powered 7-series sedan at the 2008 SAE World Congress in Detroit that actually emits less carbon monoxide than is found in the air around it. At last year’s Frankfurt auto show, Mercedes showed off a number of diesel-electric hybrid concept cars that are scheduled for production in 2010 as well as its Diesotto engine, which uses turbo charging, direct injection, and diesel-like compression to maximize power and fuel economy.
Luxury German automakers are likely to be among the hardest hit by new European Commission legislation for stricter emissions and fuel efficiency standards, and consequently have been making efforts to find more efficient versions of their performance-focused lineups.