The German luxury car maker Audi, which is owned by Volkswagen, wants to overtake domestic rivals BMW and Mercedes next year in the European market despite a market slump, a press report said on Monday.
"We are reinforcing our positions, while others are losing" ground, Audi sales director Peter Schwarzenbauer told the business daily Handelsblatt.
"We will have passed our main competitors in 2010" in terms of sales in the European market, he added.
Audi is already ahead of BMW and Mercedes, a division of Daimler, in China, and "the remaining markets will follow by 2015," Schwarzenbauer forecast.
Like other auto manufacturers, Audi has suffered from a sharp downturn in the global market, and expects unit sales to fall by around 10 percent this year from the record 2008 level of one million vehicles.
But Audi believes it will "come out of the crisis in better condition than many competitors," Schwarzenbauer said.
"Once the crisis has passed we will offer an extremely beoad range of high-end vehicles," and the group still planned to sell 1.5 million vehicles worldwide in 2015, the sales director added.
"Despite the crisis, we are investing in new products. There are no cutbacks" in that effort, he said.