Audi To Stop Building Smaller Cars

Tue 3rd Aug 2021

European Union emissions regulations are cutting the profit margins on small cars to such an extent that some of the biggest motoring manufacturers are now thinking of ditching compact cars.

So-called subcompact and city cars have often been marketed as the perfect solution to urban living, perfect for parking when space is at a premium and often requiring less engine power and more MPG, and now in some of the biggest cities, low low emissions.

But now Audi, as part of the Volkswagen Group, as arguing that the research and development required to develop greener and smaller engines to fit into the super minis is not worth the effort compared the profits driven at what is the more affordable end of the market.

With only a decade left of petrol and diesel engines, the window is getting smaller for combustion engine development, and the likes of Audi have taken the decision to throw no more money at the smaller car, starting with the A1.

Speaking to Automotive News Europe, Audi’s CEO Markus Duesmann said: “A lot will depend on the final Euro 7 target. We know that offering combustion engines in the smaller segments in the future will be pretty difficult because the costs will go up. Therefore, we won’t have a successor to the A1.

“We have to cut back. We don’t want to add the same portfolio electrically and we do make purpose-built electric cars because we can offer more functionality in purpose-built electric cars.”

The report in Automotive News Europe claims that other brands are cutting back on their super minis with Opel dropping the Karl and Adam brands, while Peugeot and Citroen are making similar plans to stop production of the 108 and C1.