Audi Shelves Hybrid Q7 in Favor of Smaller Q5
AUBURN HILLS, MI - Audi AG’splan to develop a hybrid version of its Audi Q7 luxury SUV is on hold becausethe automaker has decided it wants to introduce its smaller Q5 SUV as a hybridwith a more advanced battery that remains under development, according to www.freep.com.The decision, first reported by European car magazine Autocar, was made because Audi thinks hybrid systems are moresensible in smaller vehicles and because it wants to introduce the vehicle withlithium-ion batteries instead of nickel-metal hydride batteries.
Nickel-metalhydride batteries are used in hybrid vehicles today while lithium-ion batteriesremain under development for the automotive industry. Audi had said it wouldintroduce the Q7 Hybrid during the fourth quarter of this year.
The Q7 islonger, wider and taller than the sporty Q5, which is to go on sale early nextyear. There is no official timeframe for the Q5 hybrid, but Autocar speculatedit could debut in 2010.
Audistill plans to introduce a diesel version of the Q7 in the United States during the first quarter of 2009.