About a month after Volkswagen celebrated building its 30-millionth example of the Golf, Audi has announced that it has produced three million versions of its small hatchback, the closely related Audi A3. Probably more surprising than the fact that the A3 has moved in such big numbers since its global debut in 1996 is the fact that it has done so with relatively little support in the US, seeing marginal sales in the States since 2005.

The three-millionth A3 was a Sportback TDI model, but the lineup has grown this year to include a new sedan and S3 model, and the hybrid A3 E-tron is on the way. With these new models – especially the sedan in the US – we expect the A3 to continue to be a popular entrant in the premium small segment. Scroll down for Audi's official press release.
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THE AUDI A3 – THREE MILLION CARS AND COUNTING

Incredible success of Audi premium compact hatchback is highlighted by three millionth example to leave the line in Ingolstadt

Audi A3 number three million – a Sportback 2.0 TDI quattro – left the production line in Ingolstadt, Germany this week
Pioneer of the premium compact hatchback class started life 17 years ago and is now in its third generation
Latest, all-new car is the first to be available in saloon form


17 years of enduring global appeal have just culminated in the production of the three-millionth Audi A3, the car which in 1996 stole a march on the German prestige 'establishment' by spearheading the creation of the now flourishing premium compact class. Car number three million is a 2.0 TDI quattro version in five-door Sportback form, one of three attractive body styles currently available in the all-new, third generation A3 range, which for the first time also includes a four-door saloon option. More variants are set to follow.

"Three million automobiles in the compact class is 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."

In 2012, Audi produced a total of 152,993 A3 series cars at its plant in Ingolstadt, Germany. This total included A3 and A3 Sportback models, as well as S derivatives. The new Audi A3 Sportback, launched in 2013, has accounted for the highest proportion of this production volume: Each day, about 700 examples of this immensely popular variant roll off the assembly line.

Approximately 913,000 examples of the first Audi A3 were sold. That worldwide success continued with the second generation (2003-2013), which underscored the Vorsprung durch Technik brand's domination of this segment in terms of technology and quality. Nearly two million of these second generation cars were delivered to customers.

In late 2012, the completely new third generation car made its debut, and again set new benchmarks for quality, build integrity and technological sophistication at this level. Last month, the new A3 Saloon joined the three-door and Sportback variants, and later this year the new 300PS S3 and S3 Sportback will make their UK debuts, followed in early 2014 by the S3 Saloon.

All three A3 ranges offer a choice of exceptionally efficient, highly refined engines, including the 1.4 TFSI with Cylinder-on-Demand technology and 60.1mpg potential and the 1.6 TDI which pares CO2 output back to 99g/km. They combine these with fit, finish and equipment worthy of an executive class car, and also offer the opportunity to upgrade with sophisticated options such as Audi magnetic ride damper control, a 'hands-free' parking assistant, swivelling adaptive cornering lights, a 705-watt Bang & Olufsen audio system, MMI touch fingertip data entry and Audi connect, bringing internet-based services to the car. In the near future, high-tech all-LED headlights will also be added to this list as an alternative to the more familiar xenon units.

Next year the A3 range will also embrace the future with its first hybrid variant – the petrol-electric A3 e-tron, capable of covering up to 188mpg while emitting as little as 35g/km of CO2 (according to the NEDC test). In the meantime, prices for the existing A3 range start from £18,280 and rise to £29,160, with the S3 and S3 Sportback priced at £30,640 and £31,260.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 30 Comments
      Forrest
      • 1 Year Ago
      I just looked at audiusa.com and the A3 isn't even shown as a model. Kinda hard to buy what they ain't sellin'. But I'd love an A3 Sportback TDI.
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Forrest
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      Myself
      • 1 Year Ago
      Explain something to me. A3 is a car that over the years shared all its mexhanical parts with the likes of Seat Leon and Skoda Octavia and Golf. In other words, it used the same technology that nobody in their right mind could describe as premium, progressive or advanced in an Octavia. A3 was, for all practical purposes a rebodied Skoda Octavia. Yes, more leather and faux wood, but a proverbial lipstick on a pig comes to mind.... So why would anyone buy it? Except for that delusion of a \'brand\'... and clever marketing...
        Georg
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Myself
        There are some different ... in fact they only share the platform and some engines... For example there was no 225hp Octavia... the Audi S3 with AWD was lunched in 1999. Some engines like the 131hp 1.9TDI were first time available for Skoda as they were phased out at Audi (the 131hp diesel was phased out in the A3 in 2003 and from that date it was available in the Octavia would you tell the same every Bentley customer buying a Continental ? Because technical the Bentley is a redesigned VW Pheaton in british clothing sharing the same platform and technology... but Bentley ask two to three times the Pheaton price...
        Pdexter
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Myself
        Well Octavia and Skoda itself are seeing in such a good light these days that VW had to restrict some of the extras that came default on the car. Skoda these days might not be premium, but they are hell of a food cars. In the end sharing a platform doesn't really mean much at the day and age of today. I mean VW is at the moment going forward of a truly unified platfrom that is has poured over 10 billion euros over 10 years time. My A4 avant 09 shared platform with later gen Skoda and that gen passat. The car drove a lot better than my current 2012 C Series.
          • 1 Year Ago
          @Pdexter
          [blocked]
          • 1 Year Ago
          @Pdexter
          [blocked]
        LW
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Myself
        If you think Audi is just another 'brand' under the VW umbrella, you are sorely mistaken. This is not a marketing brand like Lexus, Infiniti or any of the big 3's with their badge engineering. The platform which the A3 resides on are shared by the subsidiaries, but then each one takes that and design their own car. Remember, the 2.0T was an Audi design that VW took to replace their embarrasingly underperforming 1.8, 2.0 and 2.5 engines. And before Audi decided to go forward with a FWD based AWD, VW had 'Syncro' that used viscous coupling.
          Myself
          • 1 Year Ago
          @LW
          But Audi is just another brand under VW.
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Myself
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      • 1 Year Ago
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      • 1 Year Ago
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      Dave
      • 1 Year Ago
      Anyone who calls the A3 a more expensive GTI doesn't know what their talking about. The hatch which was just phased out had a much better interior and Quattro. When the new car lands in North America it will make it even more distinct from the current GTI. The A3 also had a huge advantage for tuning because of the Quattro the only GTI with this was the 4Motion R32 and Golf R and they range in price around the Audi A3 mark. As for the Mini, you want to talk about an over price car because your paying for the fact that BMW built it.
      knightrider_6
      • 1 Year Ago
      Does it include Golf sales numbers as well?
      Carguy
      • 1 Year Ago
      Hard to believe they sold so many by looking at American roads. The A3 wagon is a nice car but its always had a bloated price and never really had a decent lease price. Anytime I looked at getting one for myself or helping a friend get one the A4 which was a higher MSRP car had a lower lease payments. Its almost as if they were convinced Americans don't want wagons and so they dod not try to sell them.
      Mr. BaderĀ®
      • 1 Year Ago
      Go audi
      Scooter
      • 1 Year Ago
      Big Audi fan, but never loved their iterations of 5 doors. The rear ends are almost always boring and under designed.
      As19
      • 1 Year Ago
      Guys. US is not the World, time to get used to your diminishing position...
      FIDTRO
      • 1 Year Ago
      Nice milestone.
      • 1 Year Ago
      [blocked]
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