Audi will launch its first hybrid model, the Q5, at the end of 2010, the company has confirmed.
The Audi Q5 hybrid is likely to be powered by a 3.2-litre V6 petrol engine in combination with a pair of electric motors housed within the gearbox and a lithium-ion battery pack.
In an interview with Autocar last year, Audi's R&D chief Michael Dick said the firm had postponed development of a hybrid Q7 in favour of the smaller Q5.
“We are looking to make the Q5 our first true hybrid model, and the plan is to have it ready for lithium ion technology,” said Dick in the exclusive interview.
The hybrid Q5 had been tipped to be launched at this year's Frankfurt motor show, but Audi said it will be unveiled later in 2010 with sales starting in early 2011.
The Q5 will be one of a number of new models Audi is planning to introduce before 2015. The firm said in a statement it wants to increase the number of models it offers from 34 to 42, with next year also seeing the arrival of the A1, A7, A8 and R8 Spyder models.