What happens when an auto company finds that a certain offering is not selling enough to make a good business case? Continuing to build and sell such vehicle would only be counterproductive, thus, stopping its production could be a good decision. That might the case for the Audi A3 three-door hatchback, which according to a report by Autocar, would be dropped in the coming years.
The fourth generation of the Audi A3 family is due to arrive sometime in 2019, ushering a new era for the German premium carmaker’s small family car. However, it seems that Audi is not bent on giving the A3 three-door hatchback another crack for glory, AutoCar reports, citing sources privy with what goes on inside the luxury carmaker.
As per the British auto publication, Audi officials have indicated that the dropping of the A3 three-door hatchback is part of the carmaker’s model consolidation program. It added that the program was prompted as part of the cost-cutting measures needed to ensure that there are enough funds for fixing the Volkswagen Group’s Dieselgate scandal. Simply put, its continued decline in terms of sales means that there is no more business-related reasons for the auto company to allow the A3 three-door hatchback to live on through the next generation.
Should the three-door be officially dropped when the next generation of the A3 family arrives in 2019, it means that the new A3 lineup would only have one traditional hatchback model, in the persona of the five-door A3 Sportback, sources at the premium carmaker told AutoCar. Until 2019, the A3 three-door hatchback will still go on.
By 2020, another A3 model is set to enter the next generation – the new Audi A3 Saloon (Sedan). This variant of the A3 would be slightly larger in order to provide more leg room in the rear cabin as well as more boot space.
While Audi might axe the A3 three-door hatchback, the German premium carmaker is already developing a possible replacement, which is not yet confirmed for production. This new variant will be in the guise of a five-door liftback, which will be up for introduction in 2021, or two years after the first variant of the fourth generation A3 is launched in 2019.
Audi introduced the third generation of the A3 in 2012, following its unveiling as the 2012 Geneva Motor Show. In 2016, the third-generation A3 received a major facelift, with changes including the inclusion of the Matrix LED headlamps as well as fully digital 12.3-inch instrument cluster screen. The 2017 facelift also saw an update to the A3 engine lineup -- three gasoline and three diesel units with power output ranging from 81 kW (110 hp) to 140 kW (190 hp). All A3 models comply with the EU6 standard.