Audi CEO Rupert Stadler told Automotive News Europe in an interview that this represented a more than 20 percent increase in headcount globally by 2010.
“Our sales growth goes hand in hand with additional production capacity, products and people,” he said. “Last year we employed 58,000 globally. By the end of the decade it should be 70,000.”
Audi, which belongs to Volkswagen, aims to take over BMW’s position as the biggest maker of luxury cars in the world. Last year 1.1 million new Audis hit the roads, followed by an expected 1.2 million this year and a projected 1.5 million per year by 2015.
This year Audi will hire 1,200 new workers worldwide and bring more than 200 contract workers on board as employees as well as giving 700 apprentices jobs, he told the magazine.
One focus of the expansion plans will be America, with sales in the United States up by 14 percent so far this year and expected to stick at such a pace.
“We want to increase our US sales by a double-digit percentage this year,” said Stadler. “Our dealers are demanding more cars right now than we can deliver.”
Yet a decision on whether to build an assembly plant in the United States is still being weighed up with Stadler only saying a decision will be made by 2015. Such a move would create up to 2,000 new workers. But the US is not the only market in Audi’s sights.
“Anyone who knows Audi understands that we are not a brand that will stop at that point, as we still see strong sales potential in markets such as China, Russia, India, South America and also in the US,” said Stadler.