German automaker Audi will produce only electric vehicles starting in 2033, the company announced Tuesday.
Audi will stop launching new models with combustion engines in 2026 and will completely stop production of such vehicles in 2033, according to its president Markus Duesmann.
The only possible exception is China, where Audi is partnering with local manufacturers, but in the other regions production of gasoline and diesel cars will be phased out and Audi is “strategically reorienting” to achieve CO2 neutrality “by 2050 at the latest.”
At the same time Duesmann said that “Audi’s latest combustion engine will be the best ever built.”
By 2025 Audi plans to have more than 20 electric models in its portfolio.
This accelerated shift towards electric cars, under pressure from increasingly stringent European anti-pollution regulations, is part of the transition of the Volkswagen group, whose main brands will increasingly offer battery-powered models to catch up with rival Tesla.
The group plans to invest 46 billion euros over five years to achieve this historic change.
Six electric battery factories will be built across Europe as part of the plan, which aims to reduce dependence on Asian suppliers. Volkswagen expects to discontinue the sale of fossil fuel-powered cars by 2040.