At the Audi plant in Ingolstadt a production milestone was reached last week when 20 years ago, on September 18, 1995, the first Audi A3 came off the assembly line. Since then, the Audi Group has built over 3.5 million units of the successful model worldwide. In Ireland, it continues to be the top selling model in its segment, coming out on top as number one for 15 consecutive years.
One out of every five Audi cars delivered today comes from this model line. At the same time, the Audi A3 is a ground breaking car when it comes to alternative drive systems as demonstrated by the flexible production of the A3 Sportback e-tron, A3 Sportback g-tron and classic A3 models. They are all built on the same production line at the Ingolstadt plant. In Ireland, the A3 has consistently out-performed previous sales figures over the last 4 years and it looks set to break sales records again this year.
“20 years of the Audi A3 – that is 20 years of success in the compact class. Back then, we founded a new segment with the A3. Today, the high-volume A3 family is a fixed component of our model line-up,” says Prof. Dr. Hubert Waltl, Audi Board Member for Production. “Two decades of the Audi A3 – and behind it a highly qualified production team. Without them, such a success story would not have been conceivable.”
When it made its debut, the Audi A3 was already setting new standards in the compact class with its sporty character, high quality workmanship and optional quattro all-wheel drive system. At the Ingolstadt production site, innovative production technologies and maximum flexibility in body manufacturing have been guaranteeing this top quality right up to today. The A3 family has grown from its original 3 door and 5 door variants to include both Saloon and Cabriolet. The introduction of the A3 Saloon in 2013 has contributed greatly to the continued success in the last two years.
Series production of the first plug-in hybrid model at the Ingolstadt plant is a ground breaking achievement in the direction of electric mobility. Here, Audi is producing the Audi A3 Sportback e tron in the same cycle time and on the same line as conventional A3 models. Demand is especially strong in the Netherlands where every second Audi A3 Sportback car sold is an e-tron.