"There is no doubt...that crossovers are still selling like hotcakes even though the trend seems to be shifting toward more compact models," said Audi chairman Rupert Stadler.
Yet the model that started it all has grown long in the tooth and needs some radical dieting to keep up with the young boys on the market. That’s why, according to Automotive Magazine, the luxury Ingolstadt SUV will go on a severe diet, and eat aluminum for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
The platform will be shared with both the Volkswagen Touareg and Porsche’s Cayenne. But while the other two German carmakers have managed to shave about 400 pounds (181 kg) off their SUVs, Audi wants much, much more.
According to the aforementioned source, the next generation of Q7 is expected to shed 650 pounds (295 kg). The new model will arrive next year as a 2013 model year. Extensive use of aluminum throughout the body will help with weight saving, but the smaller engines that the company is working on should help as well.
We can be sure that forced induction 3.0-liter will serve as the backbone of the engine range, and some V8 models might get the axe, like it happened with the facelifted S5. Audi might produce a really efficient diesel to south eco-oriented customers, but a hybrid is also likely following the trend set by the Q5.