FRANKFURT -- Audi said it will invest 14 billion euros ($15.9 billion) through 2023 in electric mobility, digitalization and autonomous driving.

Overall, the companys total projected expenditure for the next five years amounts to $45.6 billion, the company said.

"This planning round bears a clear signature: We are taking a very systematic approach to electric mobility and will be much more focused in future," Audis interim CEO, Bram Schot, said in a statement.

Audi is introducing three new-generation volume electric cars. The first, the e-tron crossover, is now being rolled out in Europe. The e-tron Sportback arrives late next year. Audi gave a glimpse of the third model, thee-tron GT, with a concept at the Los Angeles Auto Show last month. The GT concepts production version is due to go on sale in 2020 as a rival to the Tesla Model S.

The share of total expenditure for electric mobility, digitalization and autonomous driving will increase significantly over the planning period, Audi said.

The automaker is working with Porsche to develop a new electric platform called PPE, or premium architecture electrification, for large electric cars. It plans a full-electric compact hatchback using parent Volkswagen Groups MEB electric platform.

By 2025, the automaker will offer about 20 electrified models, about half of which will be full-electric cars.

Audi said it is also pushing forward with the digitalization of its cars and plants, and is expanding its business model with new digital services such as "functions on demand."

To help fund the investments, the company launched a cost-cutting program called the Audi Transformation Plan with the aim of reducing complexity, utilizing synergies, and identifying and discontinuing activities that are no longer relevant to customers. It said the restructuring measures will generate $1.1 billion in earnings uplift already this year.

Source: Autonews

December 4, 2018