VW Group confirms manufacturing plans
22 April 2009

The Volkswagen Group will put two important new cars into production in 2011 – the Audi Q3 and the VW Up!, along with its Seat and Skoda variants.

The Q3 will be built at the Seat’s Martorell plant in Spain while all three model variants of the production version of the Up! will be made at VW’s Bratislava plant in Slovakia, it was confirmed today .

The Up! will be built in three and five door formats and production will start at the beginning of 2011. Bratislava currently builds the Skoda Octavia, the Audi Q7 and the VW Touraeg and its flexibility is one of the reasons VW has selected it to make the three-model Up! range, which the firm is calling “New Small Family.”

To build the new Q3, Audi will spend €300m on readying Seat’s Martorell plant for the new SUV. Last month Seat’s workers agreed to a pay freeze in return for the promise that their plant would get a new car to build, now confirmed as the Q3.

Martorell will be capable of building up to 80,000 Q3s a year. The new car will provide Audi with a rival for the BMW X1, and is described as “a coupe like five door SUV with seat positions, wheels size and ground clearance of a typical SUV.”

It was previewed by the Cross Coupe Concept, unveiled at the Shanghai motor show two years ago.

The decision to build the Audi Q3 in Spain means that it will not be built in the US, as originally planned. “A decision about production in the USA has been postponed,” Audi said in statement.

CEO Rupert Stadler added “Audi is in a good position. There is currently no urgent need to select additional sites.”

Our Verdict

The Audi Q3 is a desirable and capable contender that fails to engage its driver, which ultimately, leaves it trailing the BMW X1 and the Range Rover Evoque

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