It's official: there will be no Audi version of the Volkswagen Up! - but the German luxury brand is looking to expand its SUV range to include a new model, possibly badged Q9.

Audi A2 Concept 2011

Car Magazine quotes Audi Chairman of the Board and CEO Rupert Stadler as stating the brand has no need for a car smaller than the A1, putting to bed longstanding rumours of a potential spinoff version of the Volkswagen Up!.

"There is no need for a car [smaller than the A1]," Stadler said. "We are quite happy with A1. It sells 120,000 units, and has a high degree of equipment and accessories, so [profit margins] are quite good."

At the other end of the scale, the brand is looking to beef up its sales of SUVs - and a new flagship high-riding model to tackle the likes of the Land Rover Range Rover long wheelbase, Mercedes-Benz GL-Class and the recently announced BMW X7, not to mention the upcoming production versions of the Lamborghini Urus SUV and Bentley SUV.

audi-suv

"We want to expand the SUV side of the business. By 2020, our Q-models will account for over 45 per cent of sales," Stadler said. "If we do [an SUV larger than Q7], it will not be because of what our rivals are doing."

Stadler confirmed that the range-topping SUV model - should it be built - will be offered with a plug-in "e-tron" hybrid drivetrain, which plays a big part in the brand's plans prior to 2020.

Audi currently offers three SUV models - the Q3, Q5 and Q7 - but there are persistent rumours of Q4, Q6 and Q8 SUVs that would fill the gaps between the practicality-focused models with more stylised coupe-inspired offerings.