In November last year it was reported Audi has decided to delay the development of the next generation A3 and to focus on the consequences of the Dieselgate. Apparently, the world’s biggest scandal in the auto industry will even further affect the future of the hatchback, according to a recent report by Autocar.
The British publication claims Audi will drop the three-door variant of the car as part of “a model consolidation program instigated as part of the cost-cutting initiatives” from Volkswagen. Simply said, Audi sees not enough demand for such a model to make a solid business case.
The last three-door A3 will be produced sometime in 2019, just before the next generation of the A3 arrives. The successor of the five-door A3 Sportback will remain the only traditional hatchback in the German company’s lineup, according to sources quoted by Autocar.
About a year after the launch of the new A3, its family will grow with the addition of a new A3 Sedan. Set to slightly grow in size, it will offer more leg room and boot space. The sources also say a third member of the family will go on sale in 2021 in the form of a five-door liftback.
Nothing is official yet, but company execs want to answer the ever-growing popularity of cars like the Mercedes-Benz CLA and CLA Shooting Brake. Think of it as what the A5 Sportback is to the standard A4 – more elegant and stylish body style with slightly reduced practicality and plusher image.
The current generation of the A3 was refreshed in 2015, when it received new fascia and improved engine lineup. In 2016, the U.S.-spec A3 also gained a new 2.0-liter TSI engine with 186 horsepower (138 kilowatts) and 221 pound-feet (299 Newton-meters), replacing the old 1.8 TSI.