Audi is moving production of the Q5 from Ingolstadt to its brand new factory in Mexico, which represents the company’s first car plant on the North American continent. More than 3,300 jobs have already been created, and by the end of the year the number will grow to a total of 4,200 jobs to support an annual production capacity at the San José Chiapa factory of up to 150,000 units.
Built over the course of three and a half years, Audi’s new facility in Mexico covers an area of 988 acres (400 hectares) and includes all of the essentials: press, paint, and body shops, along with the assembly line. It was all possible following a massive investment of more than €1 billion (around $1.1B) to achieve a new milestone in the history of the company, according to Audi’s CEO Rupert Stadler.
Introduced in Paris earlier this month, the 2017 Q5 is being assembled at the new factory and it’s scheduled to go on sale at the beginning of next year. Slightly larger than before, the crossover is up to 198 pounds (90 kilograms) lighter than its predecessor and rides on the same MLB Evo architecture as the A4 and A5 models from where it will inherit the engine lineup together with the gearboxes.
Representing a first for the Q5 is the optional adaptive air suspension derived from the one available in the second-gen Q7. With the exception of the 150-hp 2.0 TDI diesel where the Quattro setup is optional, all of the other engines will be linked as standard to Audi’s AWD system.
As with virtually all Audis out there, the new Q5 will be offered with a plethora of customizations, with customers having to pick from 14 exterior colors, several S Line packages, LED or matrix LED headlights (with sweeping turn signals), a Bang & Olufsen sound system, 12.3-inch entirely digital instrument cluster, and many more.
European markets will be the first to get the car, and Audi has already announced in Germany the entry-level Q5 2.0 TDI 120 kW Quattro S tronic is going to cost €45,100.
Gallery: 2017 Audi Q5
AUDI AG opens automobile plant in Mexico
Audi is further expanding its worldwide production network and thus continuing along its path of global growth. This Friday, the Audi Board of Management opened the company’s first automobile plant on the North American continent. Starting now, the brand with the Four Rings will produce the new generation of the Audi Q5* for the world market in San José Chiapa in Mexico’s federal state of Puebla. The plant has an annual production capacity of approximately 150,000 premium SUVs. By the end of the year, a total of 4,200 jobs will be created locally at Audi México.