Automotive milestones come and go, but few are as significant as the one observed today by Audi. Workers and company executives celebrated the production of the five-millionth A4 earlier this morning.
The 5,000,000th car was a bright red A4 Avant 3.0 TDI Quattro. Fittingly, the car rolled off Audi’s assembly line in Ingolstadt, Germany, where the A4 model has been built since its inception in 1994 (although a plant in Neckarsulm, Germany, has provided extra volume since 2007). Plant manager Peter Kössler said, “The A4 success story at this production plant is impressive evidence of the performance that the Ingolstadt team is capable of.”
The A4 continues to be Audi’s best-selling car in the U.S., with 34,672 units sold here in 2010. Even so, the A4 trails its key German competitors: Mercedes-Benz moved 58,785 C-Class, and BMW sold 100,910 copies of the 3 Series last year. That said, the A4 managed to edge out the Acura TL, which recorded 34,049 sales in 2010.
The 2011 A4 comes standard with a 211-horsepower, 2.0-liter TFSI engine, with a choice between sedan or Avant body styles. There’s also a hot S4 with 333 horsepower from a supercharged 3.0-liter V-6. Although the 3.0 TDI diesel engine equipped in the five-millionth A4 is unavailable on our shores, Audi plans to offer the next-generation A4 with a 2.0-liter diesel starting in 2014.