Audi want to build the next Q8 e-tron in Mexico

Three weeks ago, it was just a rumour. Now, the decision is taking shape. Audi wants to withdraw production of the next Q8 e-tron from Europe and relocate it to Mexico. The Brussels plant, where the current generation is built, will not be closed - they will "think about something," Audi says.

Image: Audi

The source is none other than Audi Board Member for Production Gerd Walker. The rumours became known at the beginning of February. Walker has now clarified: “We will build the Q8 e-tron successor in Mexico from 2027. We have already decided that,” the manager said at the “Automobilwoche Congress” in Munich.

The decision may already have been made internally at Audi. However, technically, the VW Group’s so-called planning round in autumn officially approves the distribution of the model series to the individual brands – so the Group level could still have a say here. An Audi spokeswoman confirmed to electrive that the course had been set, but that it was not yet a final decision.

Audi has two options in Mexico

Where precisely the Q8 e-tron will be built in Mexico could play a significant role here. There are two options, and Walker has only mentioned Mexico, but not a specific plant. Audi operates a San José Chiapa plant, where the Q5 and plug-in hybrids are currently being built. The move from the Audi-only plant in Foret near the Belgian capital, Brussels, to the Audi plant in Mexico would be an internal move and would not affect other brands. It could significantly increase the likelihood of a green light from Wolfsburg. The second option could be the VW plant in Puebla, 60 kilometres away, which would also affect the core brand’s North American production.

Audi has been building the e-tron quattro in Brussels since 2018, before which the A1 small car rolled off the production line there. With the facelift in 2022, the model was renamed the Q8 e-tron. Döllner’s predecessor, Markus Duesmann,  announced a successor for 2026, which will probably be based on the Group’s PPE platform. Duesmann had planned that the second Q8 e-tron generation would also come from the Foret plant near the Belgian capital of Brussels – and had already announced this to the workforce at a staff meeting.

Under Döllner, priorities have shifted. Rumours that the Q8 e-tron will be redesigned as a large seven-seater SUV to meet the demand for such vehicles in North America and China have not yet been confirmed. Moving production to Mexico could support this, but it doesn’t have to.

While Walker remains vague in his statements on Mexico, he also clarifies that Audi intends to retain the Brussels site. The plant has belonged to VW since 1970, with Audi taking over responsibility in 2007. Although Walker did not announce a specific model for the period after 2027, he said, “We will think about something for Brussels.” According to Automobilwoche, this will likely involve ongoing talks to interlink the individual Group brands more closely. It could, therefore, no longer remain a pure Audi plant. “We are working on even better networking within the Group daily,” says Walker. (in German)

1 Comment

about „Audi want to build the next Q8 e-tron in Mexico“
23.02.2024 um 15:36
Setting up PPE production in Mexico is a great move. It will give them the ability to build vehicles that qualify for the US $7500 tax rebate. If they structure their supply chain to meet the sourcing requirements all BEV variants of the upcoming Q6, Q8 & Macan under $80000 would qualify.

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