Audi through the voice of its technical development chief Ulrich Hackenberg has announced a 2015 introduction for a diesel plug-in hybrid system. It seems that Audi wants to beat domestic rivals BMW and Mercedes-Benz to the punch when it comes down to launching a car powered by a diesel engine working together with an electric motor. The first model to get such a system will be the second generation Q7 slated to go on sale in 2015 and will be followed shortly by the flagship A8.
The system which Ulrich Hackenberg refers to includes a V6 3.0 turbodiesel engine teamed up with an electric motor will be available on the U.S. as well as European markets. Its appearance in the Q7 will also coincide with the first use of Volkswagen Group’s MLB large car modular architecture which will bring a massive weight reduction for the full-size SUV estimated at more than 350 kg.
Hackenberg says Audi will continue to invest in diesel technology as cars equipped with such an engine are helping the brand lower CO2 emissions and increase sales. He added that a diesel plug-in hybrid system will prove to be very popular for the United States market, a bold statement taking into consideration that diesel-powered cars are not very successful in U.S. even though the latest trend shows an increase in sales.