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WARD'S AUTOMOTIVE INTERNATIONAL REPORTS AUDI NEAR DECISION ON U.S. PLANT

 DETROIT, Jan. 15 /PRNewswire/ -- Volkswagen AG's Audi unit will announce whether it will build an assembly plant in the U.S. within six months, the mid-January issue of Ward's Automotive International reports. The company has narrowed its U.S. site-selection process to the states of Kentucky and Indiana, the publication says.
 VW also is considering Mexico for the plant, but company Chairman Ferdinand Piech favors U.S. production for the company's Audi luxury brand. Piech was chairman of VW AG's Audi unit until becoming group chairman Jan. 1.
 The plant would raise cooperation between VW's Audi and Volkswagen brands to a new level, for the first time producing jointly designed cars on a single assembly line for both marques. Company insiders say the project remains in its infancy. Production would not begin before 1998.
 Sources say VW probably will approve a new plant in either the U.S. or Mexico, the newsletter reports.
 "The primary focus" is on Kentucky for a U.S. site, the story quotes a VW insider as saying. Virginia also reportedly made an early bid for the plant.
 The plant likely would build a new Audi entry-level car rumored to be in the works, the publication says.
 Ward's Automotive International is a newsletter focused on the global automotive industry and published twice each month by Ward's Communications.
 -0- 1/15/93
 /CONTACT: Jennifer J. Bott or David E. Zoia of Ward's, 313-962-4433/


CO: Ward's Communications ST: Michigan IN: AUT PUB SU:

KE -- DE013 -- 5485 01/15/93 16:00 EST
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Date:Jan 15, 1993
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