Automobile

Audi Sphere concepts point to future design direction of an electric lineup

Audi plans to unveil a trio of electric concept cars within the next 12-18 months, previewing the brand’s future design direction as it shifts away from internal combustion.

Last week, Audi senior vice president Henrik Wenders posted a video to his personal LinkedIn page teasing the three concepts, and Audi has followed that up with more details on the trio.

So far, though, Audi has only released teaser images of the Grand Sphere concept, a large fastback sedan scheduled to debut at a new mobility show in Munich, Germany, in September—although it did show something of how the silhouettes will differ between the three.

Audi Urban Sphere concept teaser

Audi Sky Sphere concept teaser

Audi Sky Sphere concept teaser

Audi Grand Sphere concept teaser

Audi Grand Sphere concept teaser

The other two concepts are the Sky Sphere, a sports cars that’s scheduled to debut in mid-August during California’s Monterey Car Week, and the Urban Sphere, which is expected to be a crossover or minivan (or possibly something in between) and isn’t scheduled to debut until 2022.

The concepts were developed by Audi’s Artemis team, which was formed in 2020 with the goal of speeding up new-car development. When the Artemis team was announced, Audi said its first project would be a “highly efficient electric car” due in 2024, and indicated upgradability and autonomous driving would be emphasized as well.

Teaser for Audi Grand Sphere concept

Teaser for Audi Grand Sphere concept

That “highly efficient” EV was originally thought to be a compact car, but a later report indicated it could be the Audi A9 E-Tron flagship SUV. Similarly, the Grand Sphere concept’s body style and size indicate it could preview an all-electric replacement for the Audi A8, the automaker’s longstanding flagship sedan.

As Audi has hinted, its cars will be moving to a single processing point for propulsion, sensors, and systems, rather than individual controllers.

Meanwhile Audi has shown its design direction for the middle of the decade—an era that mixes EVs and internal-combustion models—with the A6 E-Tron concept.


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