2. Sustainability
  3. Reporting & ESG-Performance
  4. Brands
  5. Audi

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The Audi Group with its brands Audi, Lamborghini and Ducati is one of the most successful makers of automobiles and motorcycles in the premium segment.

Audi Q4 50 e-tron quattro: electric power consumption combined in kWh/100 km: 17,2-20,2 (WLTP); CO₂ emissions combined in g/km: 0; only consumption and emission values according to WLTP and not according to NEDC are available for the vehicle.

In 2020, the Audi Group shipped 1,692,773 (2019: 1,845,573) Audi automobiles, 7,430 (2019: 8,.205) Lamborghini sports cars, and 48,042 (2019: 53,183) Ducati motorcycles to customers.

The premium manufacturer generated an operating profit of €2.6 billion in fiscal 2020 (2019: €4.5 billion) on the back of revenue of €50.0 billion (2019: €55.6 billion). Around 88,000 people worldwide work for the company, some 58,000 of them in Germany. Upon entry of the transfer resolution in the commercial register on November 16, 2020, all shares held by the minority shareholders of AUDI AG were transferred by operation of law to Volkswagen AG. The shares of AUDI AG were delisted. The Audi Group, which is headquartered in Ingolstadt, has a footprint in more than 100 markets throughout the world and 18 production sites in 12 countries.

“Vorsprung durch Technik” – also to enable sustainable business

Audi aims to systematically drive sustainability in its vehicles and services throughout the value chain. Production of the last new Audi model with a combustion engine will begin in 2026, after which Audi will launch only models with an electric drive on the world market. The company will gradually phase out production of its vehicles with an ICE by 2033*. The premium manufacturer is thus emphatically committed to e-mobility and is also accelerating the pace of its own transformation. The big goal: to unite individual mobility and sustainability for customers – and also to grow profitably as a company. To achieve that, the brand with the four rings is committed to developing new drive technologies and, as part of its holistic approach to e-mobility, is also stepping up the further development of charging technologies and infrastructure.

The brand with the four rings launched its electrification offensive with the world premiere of the Audi e-tron. It was followed at the beginning of 2021 by the Audi e-tron GT, a four-door coupé with a strong, persuasive design. In the same year, Audi presented the Audi Q4 e-tron and Q4 Sportback e-tron, its first electric cars in the compact class. The company plans to offer more than 20 all-electric battery-powered vehicles by 2025.
The premium brand is focused on all processes: where all raw materials come from, the production process itself, as well as the usage phase and recycling or reuse at the end of a car’s lifecycle.

The company offers customers the Audi e-tron Charging Service to enable easy e-mobility suitable for everyday use. It permits access to most of the charging stations in Europe – more than 290,000 public charging points in 25 European countries.

AUDI AG will also keep on reducing the ecological footprint of its production operations and work on material loops that leave no space for waste. Under its environmental program Mission:Zero, Audi aims to make all production sites carbon-neutral by 2025. Audi Brussels has been carbon-neutral since 2018, while Audi Hungaria achieved that goal in 2020. Audi’s mission to drive sustainability also applies to the supply chain. The company stages CO2 workshops together with suppliers in order to identify the potential for cutting emissions. Maximum efficiency in the use of raw materials, closed material loops, and compliance with sustainability standards are essential goals of Audi.

Audi will also tie its economic success and commitment to sustainability even more closely together – in accordance with environment, social and governance (ESG) criteria.

The criteria include climate protection, preservation of finite resources, workforce health and safety, social responsibility, compliance and risk management, and effective governance structures.

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The three project highlights in 2021

  • 1. Launch of the Q4 e-tron – a carbon-neutral product
  • 2. Audi pilots fast charging concept: Audi charging hubs
  • 3. Supply chain monitoring: Audi sets store by artificial intelligence (AI) in its sustainability drive

Launch of the Q4 e-tron – a carbon-neutral product

The Audi Q4 e-tron and Q4 Sportback e-tron play a key role in the company’s electrification strategy and offer Audi customers premium e-mobility at an attractive entry price.

The two models were successfully launched in all European markets in 2021, while customers in the U.S. have been able to order the compact SUVs since the end of September 2021.

The Q4 e-tron series and the previously launched e-tron models (the Audi e-tron GT*, Audi e-tron* and Audi e-tron Sportback*) are carbon-neutral in all stages – from production to delivery to customers. All unavoidable CO2 emissions from production and logistics are offset by carbon credits. These are certified either by the non-profit organization Gold Standard or in accordance with the Verified Carbon Standard. As a result, all electric cars supplied to customers in the European and U.S. markets since January 1, 2021, are carbon-neutral products. That has been certified by TÜV Nord.

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Audi pilots fast charging concept: Audi charging

Groundbreaking ceremony to “plug in” forward-looking project at Nuremberg Exhibition Center: Audi and the center’s operator NürnbergMesse jointly launched construction work on the world’s first “Audi charging hub” in October 2021. The project at the pilot location in Nuremberg is part of Audi’s e-mobility offensive. As the number of electric models continues to grow, so do the requirements demanded of the charging infrastructure. One answer to meet peak demand in the future could be the Audi charging hub. The concept envisages high power charging (HPC) points that can be booked and enable a high degree of planning security, while an adjacent lounge zone is intended to provide a high-quality ambiance for customers while waiting.

What are termed “cubes” are the basis for the Audi charging hub. These flexible containers fulfill various technical requirements and house not only the charging columns, but also used lithium-ion batteries to store electricity. The use of second-life modules from dismantled development vehicles means battery cells are repurposed for further, sustainable use – a major advantage, especially given their ability to act as ancillary storage for direct current. That eliminates the need for a complicated infrastructure with a high-voltage supply line and costly transformers.

It only takes a little longer than a coffee break to charge an electric Audi. The Audi e-tron GT, for example, has a peak charging power of 270 kW. As a result, it can be charged with sufficient power for a distance of up to 100 kilometers in just over five minutes, while recharging from 5 to 80 percent takes around 23 minutes under ideal conditions. A lounge is provided so that Audi customers enjoy a genuine premium experience as they while away the short time for their cars to charge.

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Supply chain monitoring: Audi sets store by artificial intelligence (AI) in its sustainability drive

The automotive manufacturing supply chain is complex. That makes it all the more important to understand potential risks and identify correlations at an early stage. Since October 2020, intelligent algorithms have therefore been analyzing news from publicly available online media sources and social networks as part of a pilot project being conducted in around 150 countries worldwide. This analysis encompasses sustainability criteria such as environmental pollution, human rights violations, and corruption. If there is any suspicion of potential sustainability violations, artificial intelligence sounds an alert.

Ensuring that its own sustainability requirements are also met by all the companies involved within the supply chain is extremely important to Audi. Audi’s direct suppliers are, in turn, obligated to ensure that their suppliers also comply with these requirements. This sustainability radar is designed to uncover violations at an early stage and initiate appropriate consequences.

The digital early warning system for sustainability risks used by Audi together with Volkswagen and Porsche collects publicly available news in more than 50 languages and from around 150 countries. The sources include social media channels, such as Twitter or YouTube, and local news outlets. Since the AI developed by Austrian start-up Prewave uses automatic speech recognition to understand the meaning of the news and messages, potential sustainability violations can be identified flawlessly.

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Stakeholder Dialogue

The opinions and suggestions of relevant stakeholders help guide Audi in developing its sustainability strategy further.

Audi is also active in various initiatives, associations and working groups, with the goal of driving ecological, economic and social issues in collaboration with stakeholders.

Audi in dialog

With the event series “Audi in Dialog 2020” at the Audi Conference Center at Munich Airport on January 28 and 29, 2020, the company continued the tradition of trusted, constructive exchange with its stakeholders. Audi experts took the opportunity to share views and experience with representatives from business, science, politics and civil society, as well as to discuss controversial aspects constructively. At four roundtables with a specific thematic focus, the company was able to gain valuable and honest impulses in the fields of action: charging infrastructure, digital responsibility, human rights – grievance mechanisms, and the circular economy.

“Audi in Dialog” will be continued in 2022 with an adapted event concept.

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Vorsprung 2030

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, dialog with stakeholders in 2021 was predominantly conducted using smaller digital formats. As part of development of the “Vorsprung 2030” strategy, for example, over 160 interviews on key trends, challenges, opportunities and risks for Audi were held with internal and external stakeholders worldwide. In various digital interactive formats over a span of several months, more than 500 Audi employees reflected on what Audi should stand for in the future. The conclusion: The issue of sustainability is deeply ingrained in the workforce and Board of Management and will be integrated even more strongly in activities throughout the value chain moving ahead.

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Next Generation: Driving Positive Impact

Audi staged initial events in 2020 to kick off a dialog series with young people. The “Next Generation” series was continued in 2021. The focus of the dialog between Audi and the young generation was initially on issues connected to formulation of the “Vorsprung 2030” strategy: In what direction should the company develop? What drives Audi employees every day? What contribution do Audi employees want to make to society and the world so that our common future is one that remains worth living in? The young internal target groups from the core regions EU, North America and China grappled with those questions as part of digital workshops and supplied valuable input for the strategy development process. Two further dialog events were held in July 2021 in cooperation with the Audi Environmental Foundation. In a virtual environment, participants formulated exciting ideas for potential environmental projects and they will be incorporated in further development of the foundation’s activities.

Green Neighbor Weeks

From October to December 2021, the brand with the four rings hosted the “Green Neighbor Weeks,” a new series of events at the Audi Forum Ingolstadt focusing on the site’s social commitment to environmental protection. The themed weeks gave visitors the opportunity to dive deep into the topic of sustainability, for example through live talks, a film series, and the highlight of the kickoff, the Green Market.

Among other things, visitors were able to learn more about Audi’s current environmental protection projects at the Green Market – such as how Audi is committed to protecting and conserving biodiversity through its environmental program “Mission:Zero” or how the company designs its sites to be near-natural. They were also able to gain an insight into how Audi is working together with partner companies from the region to advance sustainability through short transport routes and regional value creation.

Dialog with neighbors

Audi regularly hosts dialog events with its neighbors at its Ingolstadt and Neckarsulm sites, where representatives from the company inform residents about the locations’ development and their regional engagement. Current projects in Audi’s Mission:Zero environmental program, such as remediation of a former refinery site in the east of Ingolstadt in order to establish a new technology park, water recycling with the aid of a new service-water supply center, and measures to enhance biodiversity at the plants, as well as an improved traffic situation thanks to the new train stop Ingolstadt Audi, were some of the topics discussed at the last Neighborhood Dialogs in 2020. Representatives from Audi discussed how the plants and their facilities could be made even more sustainable together with neighbors from the surrounding residential areas, council representatives, local enterprises and scientific and academic institutions that cooperate closely with Audi. The Neighborhood Dialogs are part of the corporate environmental management program Audi has been rigorously committed to for many years. The Neighborhood Dialogs were not able to be held at the main sites in 2021 due to the coronavirus. The next Neighborhood Dialogs are scheduled to take place in 2022.


Audi was represented for the second time at the GREENTECH FESTIVAL in Berlin, an event of which it is a founding partner. The GREENTECH FESTIVAL aims to become the globally recognized platform for the most pressing issues of the day. From June 16 to 18, 2021, the company demonstrated at the GREENTECH FESTIVAL that its products, processes, and materials are all about combating climate change and promoting sustainability with the help of innovations, technologies and digitalization. For example, visitors learned how Audi is enabling the expansion of renewable energy sources, how its resource-friendly approach to plastics works, and the importance of artificial intelligence in the supply chain for its sustainability strategy. Experts at the Audi stand invited visitors to talks on the issue of sustainable mobility.

Following Berlin, the GREENTECH FESTIVAL was held for the first time on an international stage, namely in London, at the beginning of November. The program there primarily centered around issues related to green finance, the energy sector, and the transformation into a social and sustainable society. Audi invited visitors to discuss e-mobility, charging infrastructure, and innovative charging concepts.


Global Battery Alliance

Audi is committed to the values of the Global Battery Alliance of the World Economic Forum. The alliance is made up of public- and private-sector partners from the entire battery value chain and aims to ensure social and ecological sustainability aspects in the battery materials value chain. As part of that, the Global Battery Alliance addresses, among other things, conditions in mining of raw materials, sustainable recycling concepts to enable a circular economy, and innovations that promote the sustainability of batteries. Audi has been a member of this cooperative platform since 2017.

Aluminium Stewardship Initiative

Audi has been a member of the Aluminium Stewardship Initiative (ASI) since 2013. The ASI was established by a group of various stakeholders from the aluminum industry. The initiative’s objective is to create more sustainability and transparency in the aluminum sector and promote responsible aluminum production, processing and use. Audi is the world’s first OEM in the automotive sector to obtain certification in accordance with the ASI Performance and ASI Chain of Custody standards. Audi launched its Aluminum Closed Loop at Neckarsulm in 2017, which was followed by the press shop in Ingolstadt in 2020. Audi’s Győr site has used the method since 2021. This resulted in net avoidance of a total of 165,000 metric tons of carbon emissions in 2020 alone*.

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*Audi regards net carbon neutrality as a state in which, following the exhaustion of other possible measures aimed at reducing the still remaining CO₂ emissions caused by the products or activities of Audi and/or currently unavoidable CO₂ emissions as part of the supply chain, manufacturing and recycling of Audi vehicles, at least quantitative compensation is provided through voluntary and global compensation projects. CO₂ emissions produced during the usage phase of a vehicle, i.e. from when a vehicle is delivered to a customer, are not taken into account.

Awards in 2021

The e-tron GT wins “The Golden Steering Wheel” as the most beautiful car of the year

The Audi e-tron GT has picked up the “The Golden Steering Wheel 2021” in the category “Most beautiful car of the year,” defeating 69 other vehicle models. Readers of the trade magazine “Auto Bild,” its affiliated European publications and the newspaper “Bild am Sonntag” cast their votes in this prestigious contest in the summer.

The design icon has already captured multiple awards. For example, the Gran Turismo won the “autonis” award from the trade magazine “auto, motor und sport” for the best design innovation in 2021 in the “Luxury class” category. The e-tron GT also ran out the winner in the “Luxury” category at the “German Car of the Year Awards 2022.”

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