- 2010: Eight new models
- Large-scale investments for the future
- 2009: Sales figures higher than expected despite the crisis
- 2009: Significantly positive results in all four quarters
Audi is making a lively start to 2010. The brand will launch eight new models in the course of the next twelve months. And Audi is also keeping its foot on the gas pedal in terms of investments. “Although the effects of the global economic crisis will still be noticeable in the next twelve months, we aim to achieve further growth in 2010,” says Rupert Stadler, Chairman of the Board of Management of AUDI AG. In this respect, Audi has a solid basis to work from: The company’s original objective for 2009 was to sell 900,000 cars, and in November it raised this target to 925,000. Moreover, the company achieved significant operating profits in all four quarters of 2009.
“Great uncertainty still predominated at the start of the year. Yet in a joint show of strength all Audi employees worked with dedication so that we could hold our ground more successfully than the competition could,” was Stadler’s summary of the year 2009. Besides the sales figures for the Audi Q5, the Audi A6 and the Audi A5 family, the outstanding achievements in our largest foreign market, China, also contributed to the positive results in unit sales. There Audi already overtook the sales results for the whole of 2008 (119,598 cars) in the last week of October.
Given the good unit sales figures, the financial result for 2009 has also remained positive. Contrary to the negative overall market trend, the Audi Group began the new year with a significantly positive operating result of EUR 363 million in the first quarter.
Audi thus achieved a cumulative operating profit of EUR 1,172 million over the first three quarters, corresponding to an operating return on sales of 5.4 percent – a top value for the industry in the crisis-hit year 2009. Profits for the 4th quarter even lay above that for the 3rd quarter (EUR 348 million). We therefore achieved our goal, set at the beginning of 2009, of a significantly positive result.
The celebrations of the brand’s 100th anniversary will also have a special place in our memory. On the gala evening of July 16, 1,800 invited guests experienced the commemorative speech by German Chancellor Angela Merkel in Ingolstadt, the unveiling of the new Audi A5 Sportback and the premiere of the Chinese star pianist Lang Lang on the Audi Design concert piano. During the following festival the Ingolstadt public was treated to musical entertainment by the band “Die Fantastischen Vier” and enthralled by historic racing cars on the world-famous Donauring. The celebrations were completed in the fall with the “60 Years of Audi in Ingolstadt” festival and, in Neckarsulm, with the centennial festivities in the town center and at the Audi site.
2009 was also a year of spectacular moments in sports. In late July, for example, the four top soccer teams A.C. Milan, Boca Juniors, FC Bayern Munich und Manchester United competed for the Audi Cup in Munich’s Allianz Arena. In the end, the Munich team was victorious in this tournament, carried out for the first time. And Audi set the course in motor sports as well, continuing its success story: Timo Scheider defended his DTM title, making Audi the first brand to win the title in three consecutive years in this series.
First place was also the object of the Audi Efficiency Challenge, A to B. Here the goal was to arrive at the finish line not the soonest, but with the least fuel consumption. In the nine-day efficiency trip from Å in the Norwegian Lofoten islands to Bée in Northern Italy the consumption data were proof of the superb efficiency of the entire Audi line of models. The overall winner was the Audi A3 1.6 TDI. With an average consumption of only 3.3 liters per 100 km, it remained well below its standard consumption of 3.8 liters.
Efficiency comes standard at Audi, as is proven by the “Green Car of the Year Award,” won by the Audi A3 TDI at the Los Angeles Motor Show. This title is only one of many in our anniversary year. First place in the ADAC brand study “AutoMarxX” (best car brand in Germany) and in the “Auto Trophy 2009,” plus Bild am Sonntag’s “Golden Steering Wheel” award for the Audi A5 Sportback, all underline the company’s successful journey. The fact that Audi is so well received not only by customers but also by the experts of tomorrow is attested by studies from the consulting firm Trendence and from Universum: Audi remains the most popular employer for engineering science students at German universities.
Finally, Audi ended the year with a bang: The new Audi A8 celebrated its world premiere in the extraordinary setting of Miami, a capital of art and design. The brand’s new flagship was unveiled at the vernissage “The Art of Progress” in the midst of selected art works in the Audi Pavilion specially erected for this purpose. The sporty luxury sedan was only one of many new products, however: Audi brought six additional models onto the market in 2009. And the brand also revealed its own vision of the future: At the 2009 Frankfurt International Motor Show the company presented its research prototype, the Audi e-tron, a strictly electrical high-performance sports car, scheduled to enter small-series production as early as 2012.
– Audi AG