VW Group brand Audi is further intensifying the collaboration with SAIC and SAIC Volkswagen in a new Cooperation Agreement. Audi and SAIC have decided to jointly develop new models built on a China-specific platform named “Advanced Digitized Platform” for the next generations of premium intelligent, connected vehicles (ICV).

Cooperation starts with three BEV models covering B and C segments to quickly enter into the dynamic and fast-growing electric vehicle market in China.

Audi says the collaboration model enables Audi to significantly reduce time-to-market by more than 30% with the first model to enter the market in 2025.

“The deepened cooperation marks a significant milestone in Audi’s China strategy and further strengthens our local partnership with SAIC. We have a clear and common goal: to combine the best of our two companies to the full advantage of our Chinese customers with Audi’s premium experience and SAIC’s innovation speed in China,” said Audi AG CEO Gernot Döllner.

“Through the partnership with SAIC, we will significantly accelerate our local electrification strategy and deliver smart BEV products catering to Chinese customers’ needs. Audi’s unmistakable aesthetics and engineering together with the innovation speed of SAIC will offer Chinese customers intuitive and smart digital premium experiences, as well as automated driving features.”

“The Volkswagen Group is accelerating its electric campaign with the consistent implementation of its ‘in China for China’ approach. In this respect, we are relying in particular on the strong cooperation with our joint venture partners,” said Ralf Brandstätter, Member of the Group Board of Management for the China region. “We quickly expand our existing portfolio on the global platforms with additional China-exclusive models to win new customers and efficiently leverage market opportunities. The extended partnership of Audi and SAIC is the next important milestone in our strategy.”

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Wang Xiaoqiu, President of SAIC Motor, said: “With Audi’s strong premium product definition, full vehicle R&D and engineering capabilities, and SAIC Motor’s industry-leading innovative electric technologies, the two parties will ‘technologically empower’ SAIC Audi to make a head start and capture new opportunities in the current competitive environment.”

A joint project team has been set up with Fermín Soneira from Audi as the CEO. Soneira, former Head of Product Line for Electric Models from the A to C Segment at AUDI AG, brings 25 years of extensive experience within the Volkswagen Group to steer the partnership. “The project house reflecting the spirit of ‘the best of both worlds’ has been set up to jointly organize development, purchasing, production, and sales,” said Fermín Soneira. “With both parties contributing their core strengths, I firmly believe Audi will continue to shape future premium electric mobility by leveraging ‘China-speed’ and the innovation strength of the market.”