It’s not much of a secret that Audi Sport sort of falls behind both BMW M and AMG, in terms of both sales and brand awareness. So the new Boss of Audi Sport, Oliver Hoffmann, has been given the green-light to expand the brand’s lineup, both in terms of model lineup and awareness and the upcoming Audi RS Q8 will likely spearhead that expansion.
“We have permission to grow with Audi Sport in terms of volume, but also in terms of creating the strong brand,” Hoffman recently told Australia’s Motoring. “We have a lot of support and we have the mandate to do it.”
New SUVs will be the major additions to the Audi Sport lineup that will help create growth, sales and awareness. The aforementioned Audi RS Q8 will be the first and it will be followed by the Audi RS Q3. But they won’t be the only new models, as the brand is looking to launch its biggest model offensive yet. “In volume terms we will have the biggest model launch ever in our history in the next years … That means we will increase our sale numbers.”
While increasing sales numbers and profits is great, Audi Sport really wants to catch its German rivals. “For sure we are number three in terms of the sale volumes behind M and AMG, but we will close the gap in the next years … I am really looking forward to closing this gap in terms of volume and also the market share for M and AMG.” SUVs will help do that, as they’re unfortunately what sells.
There could be an Audi RS Q5 in the future but Hoffman wouldn’t commit to the idea. He claims that there’s “no decision” made on the RS Q5 but it’s something that Audi should likely make. BMW now has the X3 M and Mercedes-AMG has the GLC63, so an Audi RS Q5 would perfectly take those two on.
It will be exciting to see how the Audi Sport lineup expands under the direction of Hoffman. Over the past few years, it’s become a bit stagnant and predictable but the new models and new powertrains on the horizon, such as the Audi RS Q8 and RS Q3, should help it grow.