March 26, 2002
Text and photos courtesy of Audi AG
Ingolstadt, The two millionth Audi A4 left the assembly line in Ingolstadt today: a silver Audi A4 3.0 multitronic. “We have therefore set another milestone in Audi’s production history,” remarked Dr. Jochem Heizmann, Member of the Board of Management for Production at AUDI AG. The landmark car belongs to the sixth generation of the biggest-selling Audi model series which was launched in Germany in November 2000. The first Audi A4 had its debut six years before as the successor to the Audi 80. More than 4.5 million units of the Audi 80 were built in four generations from 1972 to 1995.
“The current generation of the Audi A4 has set trends in the premium segment of midsize cars,” says Heizmann.”It combines the decades of experience of Audi, the pioneer of quattro and TDI, with technology designed for the future. We are particularly proud of the outstanding demand in Germany and abroad. With more than 1,320 Audi A4 cars being built each day in Ingolstadt, we are currently producing at the limits of our capacity.” The success of the A4 is not only due to an extensive range of petrol and diesel engines, but also to unique technical highlights in this segment such as “quattro” permanent four-wheel drive and the continuously variable automatic transmission “multitronic”.
In the past year alone Audi produced 305,081 A4 cars including 80,869 Avant models. Around 22 percent or 66,750 of these were quattro models. The percentage fitted with a diesel engine totalled 49.4 percent (150,729 vehicles).
“Beautiful estate cars are called Avant”: for around 40 percent of A4 Avant customers, design is the main reason behind their choice of car. Since the start of production, the Avant has accounted for almost 29 percent of all A4 models (around 578,400). The Audi A4 Avant was first launched in February 1996. The A4 Cabriolet will extend this successful model series from April.
“As the biggest selling Audi model, the Audi A4 makes a substantial contribution to the success of the Audi company and therefore to safeguarding jobs, especially at the Ingolstadt plant”, explains Xaver Meier, Chairman of the General Works Council of AUDI AG.
In February the A4 came out on top in the poll held by the German magazine “auto motor und sport” to find the “Best Cars of 2002″. More than 162,000 readers chose the A4 as the most popular car in the category “Midsize Class”. It consequently beat 28 German and international competitors to the top spot. Also in February, the readers of the motoring magazine “Autoflotte” voted the A4 best midsize fleet saloon of 2001.
Audi is an international developer and manufacturer of high-quality cars. In 2001 the company sold more than 726,000 Audi models. The revenue of the Audi Group totalled around EUR 22 billion last year. The Audi Group has more than 50,000 employees.