Photo of 2017 A4 courtesy of Audi.

Photo of 2017 A4 courtesy of Audi.

Audi is launching 20 new or refreshed models in 2016 with a tilt toward SUVs and crossovers, including its Q2 compact SUV arriving in November, Audi's CEO told shareholders on May 12.

Audi will also bring piloted driving to one of its models in 2017 and produce an electrified SUV in 2018, CEO Rupert Stadler said. Audi's annual General Meeting was held at its Ingolstadt headquarters.

Audi delivered 620,100 vehicles in the first quarter around the globe, which represents a 4.9% increase from the same period in 2015.

Audi is banking that its Q2 compact luxury SUV will bring new, younger customers with its Internet service offered as standard equipment. The Q2 will include a SIM card with unlimited data plan that supports mobile devices via a Wi-Fi hotspot. The SUV will offer "a wide range of connect services as well as numerous driver-assistance systems from higher-range models," according to the company.

Audi began offering a revamped A4 sedan in the U.S. in March, and will introduce the sporty SQ7 TDI and Q7 e-tron quattro plug-in hybrid later this year initially in Europe. In 2017, Audi will offer the A8, the first Audi capable of piloted driving.

Audi is currently preparing for production of its first fully electric large vehicle. It will be launched in 2018 as a sporty SUV with a range of more than 500 kilometers (310 miles) and will be produced in Brussels. The plant there will also have its own battery production.

"Starting in 2018, we will launch another electrified car each year," Stadler said.

Originally posted on Automotive Fleet