By on November 23, 2014

2015-Audi-A3-beauty-exterior-005Are times changing, or was October nothing more than an optimal arranging of circumstances in favour of Audi’s smallest sedan?

Audi USA sold more A3s than A4 sedans in October 2014, a serious shift from a year ago when the old A3 hatchback was dead and Audi sold 3040 A4s.

Before we assume this will be the new way forward for Audi in America, remember that the A4 is at the end of its rope. The next generation A4 has already been spotted in camo form, and while the current car clearly remains competitive in the marketplace, it is an older design.

The A3, on the other hand, was released in the United States in new sedan form earlier this year.

Additionally, the A4’s figures don’t take into account the Allroad (basically a jacked-up and cladded A4 Avant, which is no longer available in North America) and the A3 lineup’s second offering, a convertible, began reaching showrooms this fall. Include the Allroad in the A4’s total and the A3 trailed the bigger car by 292 units in October. The A3 Cabriolet, meanwhile, makes up 17% of all A3 inventory as we speak.

Nevertheless, it’s a meaningful moment in time, a snapshot of a downward-stretching “luxury” market that needs additional entry-level models to create greater volume. Along with the 2380 A3s Audi sold in October 2014, there were another 683 Q3 crossovers. Together, they accounted for one in five Audi sales last month.

The brand’s best-selling Q5 was up 6% to 3571 units, equal to 24% of all Audi sales. Top-end models – A6, A7, A8, Q7 – collectively rose 7% to 4671 October sales, 31% of the brand’s total. Equivalent lineups at Mercedes-Benz – E-Class, CLS-Class, S-Class, GL-Class – have produced 40% of the brand’s (significantly higher) sales through the first ten months of 2014.

Yet so often this year, the more interesting shift in the premium market has seen Audi consistently outselling Cadillac: in April, May, June, August, September, and October, and by 4681 sales year-to-date. Cadillac outsold Audi by nearly 25,000 units in the U.S. last year, when Cadillac sales jumped 22% and Audi rose 13%. One key difference between the two brands is the breadth of Audi’s lineup at the top and bottom of the range. While not Mercedes-Benz-like, Audi’s broad range makes the narrow scope of the Cadillac portfolio all the more apparent. Cadillac lacks products which could directly take on the TT, R8, A8, A7, Allroad, and Audi’s new entry-level cars, the A3 and Q3.

Together, those vehicles were responsible for 28% of Audi sales last month. At Cadillac, their non-existent rivals produced 0% of the brand’s October sales.

12a4allroadCadillac’s missing parts creates a story for another day and an issue their new boss, Johan de Nysschen appears willing to take a look at only if it means Cadillac will make more money.

Back among German automakers, the A3 trailed Mercedes-Benz’s CLA by 216 units in October 2014 but leads the CLA by 1512 sales since the beginning of April, when the A3 arrived in real numbers. The GLA, in its second month, outsold the Q3, in its third month, by 1324 units in October.

When luxury automakers dive down to this price bracket, volume certainly matters. How much relevance Audi places on the A3’s A4-beating performance in October is another matter, of course, not just because of the A4’s age. With numerical assistance from a wagon, the A4 was actually the more popular product last month. Imagine that, a wagon, of all things, helped the A4 rise to the top of Audi’s car leaderboard.

Regardless of their position in the rankings, the new A3 has undeniably been a far more successful car for Audi USA than the old hatchback. Audi has already sold twice as many A3s in the last seven months than the old model ever managed in a full calendar year.

Timothy Cain is the founder of GoodCarBadCar.net, which obsesses over the free and frequent publication of U.S. and Canadian auto sales figures.

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123 Comments on “Audi USA Sold More A3s Than A4s In October 2014...”


  • avatar
    Spartan

    The A4 hasn’t changed much since 2008. Yes, the A4 looks like a downsized A4, but it’s “New” and new sells.

    Water is wet. Sky is blue. A3 outsells A4 after A4 has been on the market for nearly 7 years while the A3 just debuted.

    • 0 avatar
      ect

      Ironically, the “new” A3 sedan is virtually the same size, and looks a LOT like, my ’96 A4.

      Today’s A4 is much like what the A6 used to be. So it would be no wonder that A4 fans have flocked to the A3.

  • avatar
    petezeiss

    What’s that itty bitty car in the top photo, A3?

    Ironic that it looks like a Chrysler 200 as I saw that spoof ad for the 200 with the German voice over several times yesterday watching college ball.

    Ain’t neither of ’em much to brag about. “Großartig” my ass.

  • avatar
    Lie2me

    I think the CLA has helped the A3 even though the CLA outsold it. The CLA brought much needed attention to the segment. Those not dazzled by the star but were brought to the segment because of it will see that the A3 is just a better car

    • 0 avatar
      petezeiss

      Those two cars are roughly Corolla-sized, aren’t they? So this is like the C segment?

      • 0 avatar
        Lie2me

        The Corolla is actually quite a bit bigger by about 8″

        • 0 avatar
          petezeiss

          Seriously?!

          C’mon…

          • 0 avatar
            Lie2me

            A3

            Wheelbase 103.8 in
            Length, Overall 175 in
            Width, Max w/o mirrors 70.7 in
            Height, Overall 55.8 in
            Track Width, Front 61.2 in
            Track Width, Rear 60.1 in

            Corolla

            WIDTH 5 ft. 9.9 in. (69.9 in.)
            HEIGHT 4 ft. 9.3 in. (57.3 in.)
            LENGTH 15 ft. 2.6 in. (182.6 in.)
            FRONT TRACK 5 ft. 0.3 in. (60.3 in.)
            REAR TRACK 5 ft. 0.4 in. (60.4 in.)
            WHEEL BASE 8 ft. 10.3 in. (106.3 in.)

          • 0 avatar
            petezeiss

            Thanks for the data. It suggests another datum: anyone who goes 30+ K for one of these is silly-pants.

          • 0 avatar
            Lie2me

            Well, now the A3 gives you a whopping 170hp compared to the Corolla’s 132hp

            My cheapo crossover has 240hp… I’m so happy

          • 0 avatar
            petezeiss

            I’m just tickled that people are this dumb.

            I’m going to savor this a while.

          • 0 avatar
            highdesertcat

            petezeiss, you and Jonathan Gruber.

          • 0 avatar
            ect

            petezeiss, at any given size, one can build very different vehicles.

            I drove a 1st-gen A4 for 8 years, and test drove the 2013 A3. The quality of the car, and the drive, is vastly superior to the Corolla and its competitors.

            Americans have a tendency to judge cars by size, ignoring differences in design/features/quality.

            We could have bought a car the same size as our B250 for half the price, but it would have been less than half the car.

          • 0 avatar
            petezeiss

            Ect,
            Smoke ’em if you got ’em. Glad you enjoy what the extra moola bought you.

            I simply don’t put the kinds of demands upon a car that make all this mysterious “how it drives” ephemera (krhodes’ raison d’etre) pertinent.

          • 0 avatar
            rpn453

            It gets worse, petezeiss. I’ve got a buddy who spent twice that on a car that only has two seats, and it was used. What an idiot. He could have purchased a new Corolla instead for a third of that price, but he was obviously too stupid to shop around for the lowest price/size ratio. He also bought an Audi S4 which is somehow almost three times the price of a base Camry even though the Camry has more room. I think this is enough evidence to go one step further and suggest that he actually is mentally retarded. They probably pay him a few hundred thousand dollars a year only because they feel sorry for him.

          • 0 avatar
            petezeiss

            Just don’t ever loan him money or ask him to take care of your pets.

          • 0 avatar
            Lie2me

            “he actually is mentally retarded.”

            I’ll reserve judgement until I find out what 2-seater he actually bought

          • 0 avatar
            rpn453

            C6 Z06. Does he qualify?

    • 0 avatar
      hreardon

      petezeiss – “I’m just tickled that people are this dumb.”

      Seriously? Is this another “size = prestige” argument?

      • 0 avatar
        petezeiss

        Yep, I’m that superficial, crass and unsophisticated.

        ‘Scuse me… need mo’ beer.

        • 0 avatar
          petezeiss

          But seriously, h, this is a “WTF are you spending 15K over a Corolla for a smaller, less reliable car?” argument.

          • 0 avatar
            sportyaccordy

            Have u driven a Corolla dude…………..

          • 0 avatar
            petezeiss

            Who hasn’t?

            They work fine. Forever.

          • 0 avatar
            sportyaccordy

            Id gladly pay the premium and risk the reliability loss to have some kind of joy in my drive. A3 may not be a lot of things, but fun to drive isn’t one of them.

          • 0 avatar
            Lie2me

            You drive an Accord, you have no joy in your drive

            …and you still have a stuck “period”…………. key

          • 0 avatar
            moorewr

            You actually enjoy driving?

          • 0 avatar
            Lie2me

            Very much and I enjoy talking about cars, why are you here?

          • 0 avatar
            moorewr

            You asked why you might buy an A3 instead of a Corolla. Do you think that the Corolla is an enjoyable experience, as cars go? Do you think it is comparable to the A3 (FWD, at least)?

          • 0 avatar
            petezeiss

            I’m not interested in this dumb car anymore. Now I’m all enchanted by how a studly guy can get away with wearing such a silly hat.

          • 0 avatar
            moorewr

            Because it is a studly hat! And also because it protects his beautiful pate from shell fragments.

          • 0 avatar
            Lie2me

            Ah, a Takata engineer, nice

          • 0 avatar

            If the choice was just Corolla and A3 i would prefer the Audi. As is there is a lot to chooae from in the segment meaning i would not have to pay the Audi premium or settle for the utter lack of anyrhing intereting in the Corolla.

            That being said from everything I read the A3 is an excellent ride and it is a real looker with real presence.

            I thought you were not stuck on size issues, Pete.

          • 0 avatar
            petezeiss

            Marcelo,
            I can’t help being a North American; little cars should be cheap cars. Especially when they’re this Cozy Coupe little.

            If only it had a greenhouse like a CC.

          • 0 avatar

            Not knocking you Pete, I was just a little surprised. As to greenhouse have not been in this one yet, but visually and from what I have read on this car and other recent launches the frankly ridiculous greenhouses of a few years back are now on the way out. The A3 seems to benefit from the new trend.

          • 0 avatar
            Lie2me

            pete’s dreamcar…

            http://i7.minus.com/ibshxECwBE0gAC.jpg

            Popemobile

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            @Lie2me

            I would rock the Popemobile as well. Does it come with the bulletproof bubble and Swiss Guards, or are they add on features?

          • 0 avatar
            Lie2me

            “Does it come with the bulletproof bubble and Swiss Guards”

            Yeah, your Go Go Girls are safe back there, the Swiss Guards will be added to your On*Star bill

          • 0 avatar
            krhodes1

            Sure Corollas work fine for a long time. Doesn’t really make them suck any less, they just suck for a longer period of time.

            I can’t see buying an A4 over an A3 at all. Quite a lot more money for only a marginally bigger car, and I like small cars. But I don’t do sedans, so if I only had $30K to spend on a car, I would buy a Jetta/Golf TDI Wagon anyway.

            petezeiss obviously is a by-the-pound car buyer. I am sure there are enough Panthers left to keep him happy for a long time.

          • 0 avatar
            sportyaccordy

            Actually Lie2me I drive a 350Z and ride a sport bike. But I am a big advocate of the mid 90s DWB Accords. Underrated and versatile platforms.

          • 0 avatar
            Lie2me

            Nice car, you’ve never mentioned it before :)

          • 0 avatar
            petezeiss

            “petezeiss obviously is a by-the-pound car buyer.”

            Faugh. Unfair and inaccurate. Dimensionally, I only care about spacious interiors yielding easy access and good sightlines.

            Given that Panthers are relics of the antiquated tiny-cupola-on-a-barge template (aka: sedan) they are precisely what I *don’t* want.

            If increased weight is an unavoidable concomitant of the steel skeleton necessary to enclose a voluminous interior, fine. But given that even a crampy-ass Cruze is a 3400 lb. car, nothing is going to be a lightweight these days.

    • 0 avatar
      GS 455

      Americans are becoming more like Canadians every day. First Burger King buys Tim Hortons, then you start buying small cars, soon you’ll start watching hockey and you will like it.

  • avatar
    DeadWeight

    Screw the A3.

    I’m waiting for the Cadillac Santa Cruze (CT2) RBS (Roger Bonham Smith) edition, a front drive, 1.4 liter, $27,999, that comes standard with heads up display, CUE, and 3 months of On Star.

  • avatar
    kosmo

    So, if you include the Allroad, which most assuredly IS an A4, this article is kinda dead weight (ha ha), but interesting nevertheless, because 10 years ago, an A3 priced as it currently is (but adjusted down for inflation) would have quickly been available at deep discounts, after sitting on the lot for 5 months.

  • avatar
    Pch101

    A4 sales were down 25% for the month and 6% YTD. The A3 is off to a decent start, but it’s the decline in the A4 that is most noteworthy.

    In comparison, C-class and 3/4-series deliveries are up, so there may be an A4 problem.

    • 0 avatar
      Lie2me

      Don’t you think that there might be some confusion in the market between the A4 and A3? After all, the A3 is about the same size as the A4 was back in 2008. Back then the price difference between the two was only about $2K, now it’s $5K. A good reason right there to go A3 over A4

      • 0 avatar
        redav

        I see this as an issue of the extreme family resemblance & formulaic names. I haven’t the faintest idea what each Audi I see is–I honestly can’t tell the A cars apart–all I know is it’s an “Audi.”

        Doug DeMuro wrote a great piece on exactly that topic.

    • 0 avatar
      hreardon

      Meh, the A4 is at the end of its life, the new C is off to a great start, and the current F30 3-series is only two years old. Combine that with Audi’s reluctance to toss money on the hood to move metal and I’m really not surprised that the A4 is on the decline.

      No doubt the A3 is cannibalizing some sales as well, but the A4 is getting long in the tooth.

      • 0 avatar
        Pch101

        BMW and Mercedes both have a branding advantage.

        I’m going to also guess that the BMW leases are more competitive. VAG still places its emphasis on selling cars, which is going to hurt. It would be wise to copy BMW with an aggressive lease and CPO program, coupled with free maintenance.

  • avatar
    Fred

    I miss my little A3 hatch with manual. Without those two options I wasn’t about to spend my premium dollars. So I’m happy I saved 12g on the TSX wagon, even if it’s slower and has a automatic.

    • 0 avatar
      WheelMcCoy

      @Fred – “So I’m happy I saved 12g on the TSX wagon, even if it’s slower and has a automatic.”

      Yes, another TSX Wagon owner here!

      What’s fascinating is that Acura has been trying so long and so hard to compete with the lower upper end, without much success. Lexus has done a better job. But now, the German makes — Audi A3, Mercedes CL250 — are coming down and — almost — invading Acura territory.

      From a branding and prestige point-of-view, it’s harder for Acura to go up than for Audi and Mercedes to come down.

  • avatar
    petezeiss

    Now I’m curious about this A3 buggy.. I see they can go to almost 40K!

    Can’t I just get gold leaf covering a Rio sedan?

  • avatar
    CJinSD

    The new A3 sedan outsells the old A3 hatchback? Shocking. It seems that whatever generation of yuppies we’re on now are no different in their preferences to the ones that remember what it was like when most small cars were hatchbacks.

    I wonder what the rise of cheap cars with German prestige badges will do to VW. I suppose it is all good for everyone but VW dealers when wanna-bes lease A3s instead of GTIs, but the CLA, GLA, 2-series, and imminent FWD BMWs won’t make VAG happy.

  • avatar
    TW5

    A3 sells because it’s what the 3-series once was. Enthusiasts lament the lack of rear wheel drive on the standard A3 model, but commuters in the Northeast probably see it as an advantage. Furthermore, the short wheelbase means better turning and easier driving in tight urban/suburban areas on the east and west coasts. Audi also offers Quattro and diesel options.

    People are buying fancy Jettas because the compact luxury segment is so badly under served.

    • 0 avatar

      Agreed. Some people actually see more value in a smaller car.

      • 0 avatar
        krhodes1

        I certainly do. I just have zero need for anything bigger than a 3-series, and the only reason I have one of those is the way it drives. I would be perfectly happy with a Golf. In short or long form. I’d probably go long.

        • 0 avatar
          Lie2me

          Ever have a 5? I had an E39, couldn’t even look at a 3 after that

          • 0 avatar
            krhodes1

            2x e28s, driven lots of e39s. My e91 is only slightly smaller than an e39, and is better to drive by a country mile. Plus of course the minor dilemma that e39s are quite old now, and difficult (though not impossible) to come by with stickshifts in wagon form.

            I actually searched for an e39 stickshift wagon of the just right combination of condition and price for ages before just ordering up a new e91. Couldn’t find one.

          • 0 avatar
            Lie2me

            That 2002 530i spoiled me for sedans for life, haven’t had one since as a daily, just SUVs and crossovers now. Never found one as good that I could afford

  • avatar

    Car sizes depend on market. A3 is to a class size in Europe. Camry is a US market car, and we don’t care too much about vehicle size. Recall how early imported Japanese cars with a JDM version were always slightly narrow. I don’t think you can compare the sizes…Camry is optimized for its market here in the US, and the A3 has to be registered in more restrictive places all over the world.

    This is always reflected in the “small back seat” discussions of any 3/C/A4 sized car, and is also reflected in the inevitable Chinese market version with 4 more inches in the rear floor pan. We never got that treatment because they really wanted to push us up to the 5/E/A6 size for that family sized back seat-different than China, where the owner is likely chauffeured.

    The A3 is a nice car in its own right. It doesn’t look like anything else or cheapen the brand-yes, you can see the MQB shared A pillar if you look hard, but still…beats a CLA, and comes in cheaper than the F30…optioned up to normal levels, not the loss leader base car they advertise and no one actually buys.

    Saw a C class today, so new the wheels were still clean. The CLA is embarrassing next to it. Oh well, even my Stockholm syndrome where BMW is concerned won’t save me when the FWD versions come out…

  • avatar
    sportyaccordy

    de Nysschen is concerned about making money? Since when? Why a money losing S-class halo car and no money minting small CUVs then?

    I’m not saying more CUVs are a good thing in general, but they are def good for business. I don’t know what de Nysschen is aiming for.

  • avatar
    FractureCritical

    Worth noting that Audi spent TONS marketing the new A3. TONS. I don’t think thy ever even told the dealers they were still selling the old A3 for its full model run. Audi almost never ran lease deals on it and rarely put cash on the hood or the billboards. And it was a great little car. I drove the new one in both trims before settling on an S4. I had hoped to like the cheaper A3 or S3, but the car is miserable. It feels like a penalty box.

    • 0 avatar
      petezeiss

      “the car is miserable. It feels like a penalty box”

      A 35K+ penalty box.

      The prosecution rests.

      • 0 avatar
        patrick-bateman

        Calling the A3 a penalty box is not credible.

        I have just bought a S3 Hatchback, trading out of a Mk6 GTI and I drove everything in the class before buying. Golf R, WRX STI, AMG A45, M135. I have also driven Megane RS, Focus ST, as well as numerous rentals A4 and 3 series.

        The A3 is the best small car available.

        In the Australian market, the S3 is hard to beat with current pricing. But then increasingly few Australians are buying cars by the pound, as witnessed by poor sales of Falcon, Commodore and 300C.

        The 3 series is a penalty box. Expensive, with a disappointing interior, third world equipment levels, and in the 320 a motor that you constantly have to be up to get a rate of progress slower than a Holden Commodore. The Corolla is a torture pit.

        The A4 is an okay drive, but it is old and creaky. No surprise the A3 is stealing sales.

        • 0 avatar
          chris724

          I have 113,000 miles on my 2002 A4, which I bought new, in late 2001. It may be old, but it is not creaky! I still think the ’02 is the best looking out of the whole run.

        • 0 avatar
          FractureCritical

          yes, it is credible.
          We do not get the hatch version. a hatch would make too much damn sense in a small car. We get the sedan. Admitted, the sedan format is the least efficient use of car footprint known to the human race, but Audi takes it up a notch with back seat of purely aesthetic value, and a trunk capable of storing several sandwiches and perhaps a bag of Doritos.

          First you sit in a golf or GTI. Then you sit in an A3. you don’t wonder where all the damn money went. you wonder where all the damn interior room went.

          It’s a penalty box, and one that costs mere pennies less than the bigger (albeit older) A4

  • avatar
    HerrKaLeun

    ” Audi’s broad range makes the narrow scope of the Cadillac portfolio all the more apparent. ”

    hah, this will be resolved very soon. i know for a fact that 2029 they will bring a new flagship… and maybe in 2035 a new entry class Cadillac that can compete.

  • avatar

    The Audi problem is the different-length-of-the-same-sausage syndrome that has plagued the lineup for +/-15 years. As others have mentioned C-Class AND CLS sales are strong. Why? There is a distinction between the two models. Contrast with Audi. Not only is the A4 old, but the Bauhaus school of design lends itself towards a LACK of distinctive visual cues.

    Take a new A3, new A4, an older A6, and older A4, and run a flash card drill with photos the all four. Most of us would frankly have a hard time telling the difference amongst them, so imagine what the general public must be going through.

    http://imagizer.imageshack.us/v2/800x600q90/673/TzIG4J.jpg

  • avatar
    George B

    My first impression of current A4 vs. previous hatchback A3 was that the A4 was fairly nicely proportioned while the only thing upscale about the A3 was the badge. Audi did a great job of moving the front wheels forward to hide the FWD on the A4. Left the dealership thinking that I’d either buy a Volkswagen GTI for less or an A4 at a higher price point, but that the A3 didn’t make sense to me. The new A3 sedan is nicely proportioned and significantly more desirable than the current GLI. On the other hand, the new GTI shares a lot of hardware and improved proportions with the A3 at a lower price.

    • 0 avatar
      HerrKaLeun

      AFAIK teh A4 is based on the MLB (Modularer Längs Baukasten) for RWD cars since their AWD is RWD based. that moves the motor more front. The A3 is a FWD (MQB) car like the Golf.

      This is why the A4 doesn’t look like FWD.

      • 0 avatar
        moorewr

        AWD in Audis with longitudinal engines looks like Subaru’s – the engine is entirely in front of the front axle. The FWD A4 (“Fronttrak”) needs only minor changes from the AWD.

        What you’re describing would be true of BMW or Mercedes, but not Audi.

        There is still a real difference between the A4 and the Golf/A3/TT, because the transverse cars use Haldex, which is not a true full-time AWD system.

        • 0 avatar
          rpn453

          “AWD in Audis with longitudinal engines looks like Subaru’s – the engine is entirely in front of the front axle.”

          That hasn’t been true for a few years now. In the current generation of longitudinal Audis, the engines are pretty much centered over the front axle, giving the Quattros a weight distribution of around 55/45.

          • 0 avatar
            moorewr

            This is a nice comparison of the old and new Audi quattro set up:

            http://www.spannerhead.com/2011/06/30/on-the-significance-of-six-inches/

            The engine is still pretty much in front of the axle, but not as much as ye olde days. Old-school Audis are a little deficient in the dash-to-axle ratio, as seen with my S6:

            https://flic.kr/p/qbwEgj

          • 0 avatar
            rpn453

            Good article, thanks. I know the center of the engine on the S4 I looked at was ahead of the axle, but I didn’t think it was that far ahead. I think I may have been deceived by the engine cover.

            I’m surprised that the weight distribution is as good as it is following such a minor shift in axle placement.

    • 0 avatar
      sportyaccordy

      Yea if the A3 is facing competition from anywhere it’s definitely from the current GTI. VW really stepped it up there.

    • 0 avatar
      hreardon

      I’ve got some extensive seat time in both the new GTI and the new A3 and I can tell you that VW has done a pretty darn remarkable job of differentiating the feel of the two, but neither car feels like the aforementioned “penalty box” by any means.

      The GTI would be my pick, mainly because it offers a MT6, but also because it feels much more fun while retaining the same ride comfort and quiet in the cabin. I think the new A3 cabin is nice, if a bit spartan. The GTI feels more open and spacious, even if that’s really only in the backseat.

  • avatar
    Ryoku75

    If theres one thing that I respect about the A3 its that its one of the few “same sausage” cars that still has decent proportions, at least in sedan form.

    I’m not surprised that Audi shoppers are picking it up over the A4, it has the badge, CAN be offered with Awd, and its cheaper.

    What I am surprised is that Audi shoppers are picking up the A3 over a VW Jetta turbo, almost the same price for whats the same car underneath. In todays internet age you wouldn’t think that badge engineering would still work.

    • 0 avatar
      sportyaccordy

      The Jetta is ugly, cheaper feeling and less fun to drive. I am not sure how roomy the A3 is compared to the GTI, but if the GTI is roomier that is a much bigger threat. If you like the hatchback body style (I do) and don’t need AWD (I don’t), GTI seems like the better buy.

    • 0 avatar
      johnny ro

      Don’t underestimate the effect of a bad VW dealer as compared to a good Audi dealer. The shopping experience is very different.

  • avatar
    energetik9

    OK, so the A3 (new car, heavily marketed) outsold the A4 (7 years old, due for a new model). And this is news why? Is the author really trying to draw auto segment conclusions from this?

    Of course it was more successful than the previous version A3 wagon. It was a wagon and Americans can’t get past that.

  • avatar
    7402

    I’m really glad the writer put “luxury” in quotation marks in the article. Being of German origin does not, by itself, make any car a “luxury” car as the marketing folks would have us believe. I’ve always thought of Audi’s as sort of the “meh” German brand; calling an A3, or even an A4 a luxury car is a serious stretch (same for the 3-series BMW and the MB C-Class. It’s not a size thing, it’s refinement, though with the inherently short wheelbases in these econo-size vehicles it’s wise for manufacturers to err toward sportiness since the small dimensions make a truly luxury ride difficult. In the Audi line-up the A8 is definitely luxury and arguably the Q7 and the A6.

  • avatar
    seanx37

    I have never even seen an A3 on the road.

  • avatar
    CoreyDL

    “Additionally, the A4’s figures don’t take into account the Allroad (basically a jacked-up and cladded A4 Avant, which is no longer available in North America)”

    This is entirely incorrect. The 2015 A4 Allroad is right on the Audi USA website right now. It just came around last year or so.

    http://www.audiusa.com/models/audi-allroad

    • 0 avatar
      moorewr

      @Coreydl – You’ve misunderstood. His point was that Audi now separates sales statistics for the allroad from the A4 sedan. They are in fact the same car – the allroad is an A4 Avant in high heels.

      • 0 avatar
        CoreyDL

        Ahh, comma placement + no coffee yet. I retract my disagreement.

        That being said, the A4 Avant was such a poor seller (and looked very derpy there in the early 00s) that it’s not surprising they dropped it.

        http://riach.org/s/audi/audi_027_med.jpg

        This one. Yuck. And I liked most other Audis at that time.

        • 0 avatar
          moorewr

          Thanks for posting that sexy B5 A4 Avant. de gustibus non est disputandum.

          Audi of America knows that wagons are sales poison here, but for some reason, if you put in a lift kit and slap plastic all over it, suddenly it sells (Outback, Volvo CC etc).

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            If you think about it, there has to be some cross-continents sociological appeal to the “cladding = toughness” mentality. Even if it doesn’t have AWD. Look at the popularity in nations like Brazil, where the pretense of toughness means nothing, and no AWD – but those Adventure trims are all over the place there.

  • avatar
    Fred

    Audi didn’t import a lot of the previous A3 to America for what ever reason. If more came over I wonder if they would of sold more?

    Any one who thinks a Corolla is just as good as a A3 needs to go for a drive or has no car feelings. The Corolla is a fine car, but it’s just not as nice in any way as the A3, except for price.

  • avatar
    cdnsfan27

    Audi seriously underestimated the demand for the Q3. We have been sold out since it came out and have had to beg for a factory demo for test-drives.

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