Audi's streak of monthly year-over-year sales gains in the U.S. hit 100 as of February, and dealers came away from its NADA Show make meeting confident the brand can continue it while improving dealer profits.
New product, including the Q8 crossover and the redesigned A8, which includes what Audi calls the industry's first Level 3 autonomous driving system, is coming this year. And Audi is focusing on electrification, saying it will add 20 electrified models by 2025.
"Another reason why it's good to be an Audi dealer is that everything starts with product, and our product is hot," said David Rosenberg, chairman of the Audi National Dealer Council and CEO of Prime Motor Group in Westwood, Mass. "The money that's been spent over the past decade on r&d is astounding, and we have vehicles coming out that we just can't wait to hit the shelves."
Audi in the next 60 days plans to tweak its certified pre-owned vehicle program to help improve dealer profitability, Audi of America President Scott Keogh told Automotive News.
Keogh, speaking after the meeting, declined to offer details but said it's the latest move to help boost dealerships' bottom lines. Last year, Audi reconfigured its service loaner program; that resulted in a $700,000 swing in profitability at Prime's Audi store.
"The business has become very fluid, very dynamic," Keogh said. "You need to respond to the marketplace on a weekly or monthly basis."
Beyond profitability, dealers' questions at the meeting focused on product and how Audi planned to implement the proper infrastructure to deploy electric vehicles.
Larry P. Vellequette contributed to this report.
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