Mission Zero on track

Audi's Ingolstadt site becomes the brand’s latest production facility to become net carbon neutral.

The brand’s goal of having all of its production facilities worldwide carbon neutral by 2025 achieves another milestone as Audi HQ in Ingolstadt becomes net carbon neutral.

27 February, 2024

Ingolstadt is the latest of the brand’s plants to become net carbon-neutral

Audi’s head office and production facility in Ingolstadt is the latest of the brand’s plants to become carbon-neutral in line with its Mission:Zero program. The sprawling site an hour north of Munich was declared carbon-neutral at the very start of the year, joining Audi Brussels, Audi Hungary and the highly-specialised Böllinger Höfe facility where the Audi R8 and RS e-tron GT are produced as the latest net zero emissions production facility for Audi.

“Protecting the environment as best as possible is firmly anchored in Audi’s corporate strategy. By transitioning the Ingolstadt site to renewable energies, we are taking a major step toward our goal of net carbon-neutral vehicle production,” says Audi Board Member for Production and Logistics Gerd Walker, citing the four pillars implemented as the means by which the brand is achieving its ambitious net zero-emissions goal across the board.

Broken down, the pillars cover firstly  increasing energy efficiency and secondly producing renewable energy on site to drive production. Where self-generated energy is not sufficient to meet all needs, the third pillar sees the purchase of only renewable energy where required, while the fourth pillar involves the use of carbon offset for those areas where renewable resources are not sufficient to meet the production needs or any emissions that Audi cannot yet avoid.

In achieving its new zero target at Ingolstadt, the brand’s own Energy Analytics software has been used to quickly identify unnecessary energy consumption and allow measures to be adopted to reduce or remove those inefficiencies completely. The Ingolstadt site also features some 23,000 square metres of photovoltaic modules with an additional 41,000 square metres of photovoltaic cells under construction at the main plant.

The use of only green energy at the Ingolstadt plant where self-generated energy is not sufficient for needs has been in place since 2012, while a neighbouring refinery and the municipal waste recycling plant supply the main plant with net carbon-neutral waste heat. In addition, Audi has secured large quantities of biogas to ensure a net carbon-neutral heat supply. 

In the case of the areas where the brand is unable to reduce emissions completely, the use of offset credits is currently used, but that use of carbon credits is limited to a maximum of 10 percent of the original carbon emissions, and only carbon credits that are certified according to the highest quality standards such as Gold Standard are used.

Ingolstadt has used only 100 percent green energy at the site since 2012

Ingolstadt boasts 23,000 square metres of photovoltaic cells, with plans for a further 41,000 squares metres.

In addition, Audi is modernising, digitalising and transforming its existing plants for even more efficient and cleaner operation the future

This latest achievement in Ingolstadt shows that the Mission:Zero target of having all all of its sites net carbon neutral by 2025 is progressing to plan, with Neckarsulm and San José Chiapa on track to follow before the deadline. Many inroads have already been made at these two remaining sites to date with the plant in Mexico for example already considered a role model for the responsible use of water resources, having been building cars without producing any wastewater since 2018. 

Ultimately the goal is to create a circular economy where resources such as plastics, water, and other raw materials are used in closed cycles. In Ingolstadt, for example, the company has been operating a process water supply centre with a membrane bioreactor since 2019 to use water more efficiently. 

In addition, Audi is modernising, digitalising and transforming its existing plants for even more efficient and cleaner operation the future and as a member of the ‘Biodiversity in Good Company’ initiative, is also committed to protecting biodiversity at all its sites. 

The Böllinger Höfe facility which now also produces the RS 6 Avant GT, has been net zero since 2020.