Audi Confirms A5 Sportback and new A8 for 2009, Q5 Hybrid also in the Works

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During his speech at Audi AG's annual shareholders meeting in Germany, Audi Chairman of the Board, Rupert Stadler, revealed that the automaker is planning to present the next-generation A8 in November and extend its range with the new A5 Sportback sometime in 2009. Furthermore, Stadler confirmed earlier reports that Ingolstadt based company is also working on a hybrid version of the Mercedes GLK rivaling Q5 SUV and that the A1 minicar is due for a 2010 market launch with the Q3 small SUV following in 2011.

This means that unless Audi has another surprise up its sleeves, the four-door coupe derivative of the A5 is most probably the new model that the maker said its preparing to unveil during the celebrative festivities for the firm's 100th anniversary in Germany on July 16.

The A5 Sportback is in essence the production version of the sleek-looking Sportback Concept that was first shown in Detroit in the beginning of the year. Expect to see a familiar Audi engine lineup, including the latest 2.0-liter TSI with 211HP, the 3.0-liter supercharged V6 with 290HP and a 3.0-liter V6 diesel cranking out 240HP.

"The A4 has attracted the largest share of customers loyal to the Audi brand. And a great number of them want to move further upward while carving out their own unique identity," said Stadler.

"The A5 Sportback is precisely what they're looking for. This vehicle will pose a genuine innovation in the B segment: a revolutionary vehicle concept offering the ideal blend of functionality and aesthetics"

As for the brand new A8 sedan (see the spy shots here), Stadler said claimed that it will be the sportiest model in its segment and that it will redefine people's notions of a luxury car's interior.

"We will also be presenting the next-generation Audi A8 and rest assured, Ladies and Gentlemen, it's going to be a sensation. The A8 remains Audi's flagship: it embodies our understanding of the word "premium"," Stadler told Audi's shareholders.

"The A8 will be the sportiest luxury sedan in its class – and set new standards with regard to interiors. Its precision and build quality are second to none. This model naturally means a great deal to us, because it played a greater role than any other car in the rise of the Audi brand. And we will unveil it to the world in a remarkable fashion in late November."