Audi builds 3-millionth Audi A3 after 17 years

Article by Anita Panait, on July 19, 2013

Audi has reached a new production milestone after recently building its three-millionth Audi A3. Audi launched the A3 compact in 1996. The three-millionth Audi A3 is a 2.0 TDI quattro version in five-door Sportback form. This form is one of the three body styles available in the third-generation A3 range, which will be now available in a four-door saloon option.

Audi is planning to introduce more variant of the A3 in the near future. Audi built a total of 152,993 A3 series cars in 2012 at its Ingolstadt site in Germany. The figure included A3 and A3 Sportback models as well as S derivatives. The recently launched Audi A3 Sportback accounted for largest part of the output at the plant in 2012, with around 700 examples rolling daily off the assembly line. Audi sold around 913,000 examples of the first-generation Audi A3.

The second generation Audi A3 was very successful as well, with nearly 2 million examples delivered to customer from its launch in 2003. The second-generation A3 was known for dominating the compact segment terms of technology and quality.

A3’s dominance in technology and quality was continued in late 2012 when the German carmaker unveiled the third generation model. The carmaker then added a saloon variant of the A3 in June, joining the three-door and Sportback variants. Audi is slated to launch in the United Kingdom the new S3 and S3 Sportback later this year, to be followed by the S3 Saloon in early 2014.

Audi A3 has been designed with concise lines and compact dimensions. It is 4,237-mm long and 1,421-mm high, making it practically similar to the previous model. Its proportions are also sportier, with its wheelbase 23 mm more at 2,601 mm, its front overhang shorter, and its width 12 mm more at 1,777 mm.

Moreover, the new Audi A3 has a progressive formal language that visualizes all the passion that Audi engineers possess when creating cars. At the front, the defining element is a highly sculptural single-frame six-corner radiator grille. Meanwhile, large air intakes reflect the engines' power.

The car also has flat headlights that integrate a lower edge that is wave-shaped. Also making the A3 unmistakable are LED bands that form its daytime running lights. Xenon plus units are available as an option.

Meanwhile, on the car's body sides, a sharply delineated tornado line, which is a classic Audi design element, gives structure to the section below the windows. This dynamic line sharply rises upward from above the side sills.

Additionally, large wheel arches and dynamic flared metal surfaces lend a powerful look to the new A3. What's more, its slender C-pillars' low angles and its roof, sweeping back to its modest spoiler, express a sporty coupe-like look.

Press Release

Three million Audi A3 – bestseller from Ingolstadt

  • Production jubilee with Audi A3 Sportback
  • Premium compact class success for 17 years
  • Dr. Frank Dreves, Audi Board of Management Member for Production: “This success is backed by a strong team and an efficient production system.”

A major jubilee for the compact car from Ingolstadt: The three-millionth Audi A3 rolled off the assembly line today. The success of the A3 series began 17 years ago, when Audi established the premium compact class with this model. Meanwhile, the Audi A3 has conquered the roads of 117 countries. The jubilee car – a white Audi A3 Sportback 2.0 TDI quattro – will be delivered to its owner in the next few days.

“Three million automobiles in the compact class are quite a performance,” said Dr. Frank Dreves, Board of Management Member for Production at AUDI AG. “This success is backed by a strong team and an efficient production system. With the Audi A3, we have created a new brand segment – we have been setting standards in the compact class with innovative technology and first-class quality for 17 years now.”

“Since the middle of the nineties, the Audi A3 has become an important second pillar of our main plant in Ingolstadt, and thus makes a crucial contribution to the sustained protection of jobs at that site,” pointed out Peter Mosch, Chairman of the Group Works Council of AUDI AG. “Thanks in particular to the commitment and passion of our workforce, we have been able to write this success story.”

In 2012, Audi produced a total of 152,993 cars of the A3 series in Ingolstadt. That number includes the models Audi A3 and Audi A3 Sportback, as well as the S derivatives. The new Audi A3 Sportback has been on the market since February 2013 and is the model with the highest production volume at the Ingolstadt site: Each day, about 700 automobiles of this type roll off the assembly line. Plant Manager Peter Kössler: “The sustained success of the Audi A3 spanning three model generations is also a demonstration of the motivation and commitment of the Ingolstadt team. This is also shown in particular by the rapid ramp-up of the new model and the excellent start-up quality.”

The company has made enormous investments in the new Audi A3 – for example in an ultra-modern body shop at the Ingolstadt site and in the expansion of the Hungarian site in Gy?r into a fully-fledged car plant with a complete process chain. Audi transferred parts of the Audi A3 production from Ingolstadt to Gy?r already in 2001. This was due to the great success of the Audi A3 and the start of production of the new Audi A4 in Ingolstadt. Both sites together then produced the first generation of the Audi A3 Cabriolet and the Audi RS 3 Sportback. In the middle of June 2013, the Audi A3 Sedan was added to the A3 series. It is the first model that the brand with four rings has produced completely in Hungary. As of early 2014, the sedan will be produced also at the new plant of the FAW-Volkswagen-Audi joint venture in Foshan, China.

Approximately 913,000 units of the first Audi A3 were sold. That worldwide success continued with the second generation (2003-2013), that further extended Audi’s lead in this segment in terms of technology and quality. Nearly two million cars of this generation have been delivered to customers.

In fall 2012, Audi launched the third generation, taking a great step into the future. The new Audi A3 and its derivatives feature elegant design, exclusive equipment and highly developed technologies, and are fitted with Audi connect as standard equipment. For the driver, this system brings tailored Internet services directly into the car – from satellite navigation with Google Earth pictures and Google Street View to Audi music streaming and Audi traffic information online, or other online applications such as Facebook and Twitter.

The series sets new standards also in terms of resource conservation and low-emission mobility: with the plug-in-hybrid Audi A3 Sportback e-tron – on the market as of 2014 – and the Audi A3 Sportback g-tron. The latter can run on climate-protecting Audi e-gas as well as on fossil-fuel natural gas. The Audi A3 g-tron will be delivered to customers as of late 2013.

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Topics: audi, audi a3, production



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