A number of internal-combustion Audi models could see the end of the line as a result of an extension of the Audi Transformation Plan that “aims to provide an even more effective streamlining of operations and greater savings,” Autocar has been told.

The drive to reduce spending has seen Audi chairman Markus Duesmann call into question the future of many traditional Audi models such as the TT and the R8, both of which could be relaunched as fully electric cars, according to a source close to Duesmann.

“Cars like the TT and R8 were reviewed as part of a general cost-cutting process in the past. However, they have now come under increased focus,” the source told Autocar.

Initiated by Duesmann’s predecessor, Abraham Schot who retired in April, the Audi Transformation Plan aims to acquire growth not from higher volumes but through improving performance, Schot told Automotive News Europe last October. Audi still bears the brunt of development costs for the MLB platform, says Autocar.

The Audi TT could face the axe as well

An even closer working relationship could materialise between Audi and fellow Volkswagen Group member Porsche, with a proposal that calls for the MLB platform – which underpins the A4, A6, A8, Q5, Q7 and Q8 – to be ‘more systematically paired’ with the higher-end MSB platform that is used for the Porsche Panamera and the Bentley Contintental GT.

Audi has partnered Porsche in recent years for various joint technical developments, such as the petrol V6 engine that features in the line-ups for both brands. The 2.9 biturbo V6 powers the Audi RS4 and RS5, as well as the Macan Turbo and GTS, Cayenne and Panamera.

The Q5 will be succeeded by a battery-electric model, and it will share its Premium Platform Electric (PPE) architecture that will first debut on the next Macan. The Macan will, however, initially continue to have internal combustion powertrains based on the existing MLB platform alongside the new PPE-based model.

Initiated by Schot in 2018, the Audi Transformation Plan is claimed to have already found 4.4 billion euros (RM22 billion) in operational savings. Audi is aiming to yield up to 15 billion euros (RM74 billion) in savings by the end of 2022, of which 12 billion euros (RM59 billion) is planned for putting towards electric vehicle developments, reports Autocar.

All in, Audi plans to invest 37 billion euros (RM184 billion) in research and development, manufacturing plants and equipment until 2025. Last June, the German automaker announced that it plans to launch 30 electrified models by 2025, 20 of which will be fully electric models.