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    Audi News Blog

    Audi To Build Q5 in Mexico for North America Says Der Spiegel Report

    Rating: 2 votes, 5.00 average.


    According to Reuters, German news magazine Der Spiegel has reported that Audi has finalized plans to build its much-talked about North American factory in Mexico and that this factory will build the Q5. The story sites no sources, though the fact that the rumor comes from Der Spiegel suggests there's some legitimacy to it.

    What's Our Take
    This isn't the first time we've heard this rumor. More common believe has been that Audi would build near or even on land already acquired in Tennessee next to the current Volkswagen Passat plant. That Chattanooga theory relied upon the logic that Audi would focus on domestic production of MQB platform offerings like the A3 and Q3, utilizing the network of OE suppliers already in place there thanks to Volkswagen's presence there already. With the A3 and Q3 both coming by 2014, this didn't seem implausible.

    We'd heard Mexico through some of our backchannel VW sources and also in casual mention by an Audi source once. It was never more than a consideration, though the argument was levied that NAFTA rules and more affordable labor were strong reasons for its consideration. Also, Audi executives have always been careful to mention this expansion as their "North American" plant and not their "American" plant.

    Given all of this, we're guessing the report is correct. Audi's largest volume models in the USA are the A4 and the Q5 so domestic production of these two MLB-chassis cars would make the most financial sense. Thus far, Der Spiegel doesn't mention A4, but given it outsells even the Q5 by a wide margin in the States and the model already set in place by China with domestic A4 and Q5 production, we're figuring that's only a matter of time if a North American MLB production point becomes reality.

    Further expansion of A3 and Q3 models could come later and still go into Chattanooga as well though no one has discussed anything about a second North American production point... yet.

    Anther interesting note, Audi was decidedly quiet in New York at the auto show this week. Audi AG board member Peter Schwarzenbauer was present at the show but not very visible on the Audi stand. Could knowledge of the Der Spiegel report and not wanting to be quoted on the subject have been the reason? In all honesty we don't know but now we're starting to wonder.

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    Comments

    1. ProjectA3's Avatar
      no no no no NO Audi please build this plant in the USA you owe it to this country for it's increased sales and brining more new jobs.

      please bring production to the USA!!!
    2. FractureCritical's Avatar
      VAG and Audi make more money per car than any other maker. Do they really want to downgrade the brand image by building in Mexico when they can afford not to?
      At least in Tennesee, they could proudly wave a USA flag and tout both brand heritage and Made-in-America loyalty. Now they have to sneak around and pretend like the Q5 is a fully German car. I'm really, really shocked Audi would give up such a powerful marketing tool in hopes of making a few more dollars per cute ute. Such short sightedness...
    3. alexcast's Avatar
      Hey man what's your problem with it? Vw Mexican plant produces the beetle, jetta, transmission and motors for adi, vw, Porsche and some parts of Lamborghini and Bugatti. I,m Mexican and own a 2012 sline q5 and one 2011 rs5. There are also sales here! And not all Mexicans are like those living like you red neck in the USA. F Audi decides to produce the Q5 here then dont buy it and get a ford instead therefore you'll be proudly American consumer
    4. riosdrummer's Avatar
      Agree with Alexcast, VW's Puebla Plant in Mexico is one of the most important plants for the group, it's the second biggest plant outside Germany, it's one of the most recognized and awarded plants in the group because of its high quality and production levels, it's been working since 1967 FractureCritical have no idea of his or her words, just bull****, maybe Audi has broken some sales records in USA but also Hyundai, one month ago I was visiting four states in the USA and I didn't see any Audi there but hundreds of Hyundais everywhere so I don't know where's that "heritage and Made-in-America loyalty" he or she is talking about, whatever Long Life Audi - Long Life Mexico.

      Greetings from Chihuahua, Mexico
    5. FractureCritical's Avatar
      I'm going to skip right over the bigoted remarks and explain this rationally.

      Here's the deal,

      US Consumers pay extra for a car like an Audi, sometimes twice as much as something like a Jetta, because it is a premium vehicle built with a minimum of compromise and cost cutting. By and large, companies like Audi, BMW, and M-B build cars in the home company of Germany to acomplish this. US consumers accept this and pay extra for the car.

      Now, when cost cutting must happen, and production must be moved, some level of reciprocity must be offered to offset the cuts. A really nice way to do this is to build the cars in the host country. This allows the company to at least say the cars are putting local countrymen (and women) to work. It's a useful bit of flag waving and bragging that car companies can graciously extend to the end user.

      All things being equal, where things are made is becoming increasingly important to US consumers. If you don't believe me, just have a look at what's going on right now with Apple's iPad factory in China. Consumers of premium goods have more flexibility that any other demographic to change brand affilitations in a heart beat.

      So where am I going with this? With one decision made by a soccer mom at a kitchen table feeling guilty and reading on her iPad about how the people who made her iPad are suffering in a sweatshop in a foriegn land. Does she buy the BMW X3 built in Spartanburg USA, or does she buy the Audi Q5 built in Puebla Mexico? Maybe Audi won't make the distinction, but I'll bet you that BMW will, and that it will sell cars.

      At the end of the day, I have to believe that most premuim consumers will pull the domestic trigger.

      And just for what it's worth, I've owned many, many VW and Audi products. The worst have always come from Puebla, right up to my 2010 Jetta that had 9 (NINE!!) what the factory tech referred to as "assembly errors". Audi might sell a mexican car to someone, but not me.
    6. riosdrummer's Avatar
      C'mon my friend!!!

      Think well all your words before writing!! you're contradicting yourself, if there is something bigot in this thread are you, just by the simply fact of not accepting the matter of this entry. Audi's customers pay extra cost in US, Mexico, China, Singapur, Rumania and everywhere 'cause it's a premium brand. If a soccer mom loves Audi as all of the people visiting Fourtitude, believe me, the manufacturing origin matters a damn, she will buy a supreme Audi without a doubt, Audi's quality and high engineering is in Germany, Belgium, India, Brasil, China and Mexico. You should go to Mexico and visit all the automotive factories (Volkswagen, BMW, Mercedes Benz, Chevrolet, Ford, Dodge, Nissan, Honda, Toyota, Mazda) just to corroborate the high quality production rates and see how employees' environment is, make no mistake with Chinese iPad factories comparison, I don't think that all these automotive marks are wrong having their assembling lines in Mexico, for example Ford is going to invest $1.3 billion in its Hermosillo Plant to increase production, Mazda will open a new big plant for its future models, and there are many other examples. So please my friend get over it, if Ingolstadt decided to build Q5 in Mexico, they surely are right. Peace! Long Life Audi, Long Life USA, Long Life Mexico.

      Regards!
    7. FractureCritical's Avatar
      I might as well call you a bigot becuase the descision to build there was made in Ingolstadt (theose Germans MUST be right), but it's just a cheap diversion from the real point.

      You think people won't notice that they can buy a US made Passat for less than a Mexican made Q5? You think the decision to make Audis in Mexico has absolutely any more grounds than Audi making the biggest possible profit on every car?

      Why, I ask you, did VW build that plant in Tennesee if the plant Puebla is so damn good?

      Audi and VW aren't exactly burning up the charts in terms of reliability (and yes, I'm including the US plant, too). So I wouldn't go bragging about how great the Puebla plant is right now when the Jettas it builds are getting soundly beaten for reliability ratings by Hyundais built in Alabama. Are we going to blame that on the German engineering or the plant? Or is it bigoted of me to ask that?
    8. riosdrummer's Avatar
      Dude!!!

      None of your "arguments" make sense as a counterpoint for this blog entry!!!

      I have easy rational replies for each of your irrational "arguments":

      First, a person cannot be bigot with something that agrees.

      Once again, Audi is a premium brand, if people want to buy a Q5 its because they like premium SUV's and they will buy it (except of you of course) no matter where it was assembled 'cause ITS AN AUDI!!!!! and well maybe you don't know difference between Sedan and SUV and neither Premium and Normal car brands.

      Puebla Plant builds Jetta and lower models, right know it's almost full of capacity 'cause of the increase of assembling lines for the New Beetle.

      Since Jetta VI's full specs were released and even when the car wasn't yet on the streets bad critics and low reliability ratings began, but all these negative opinions are because of the big downgrade in materials and components quality from Jetta V to Jetta VI and nothing is related with engineering or assembling, now Jetta VI has hard plastic interiors, rear drum brakes, rigid transverse link rear suspension, etc. nevertheless I think it is and will continue being a great car because of the German design and engineering.

      Again dude, get over it!!! and simply...... don't buy a Q5 made in Mexico, better buy a Hyundai Santa Fe, Kia Sorento or Susuki Grand Vitara..... what amazing choice swap!!!

      Peace!!
      Long Life Audi
      Updated 04-11-2012 at 12:33 AM by riosdrummer
    9. FractureCritical's Avatar
      Quote Originally Posted by riosdrummer
      Dude!!!

      None of your "arguments" make sense as a counterpoint for this blog entry!!!

      I have easy rational replies for each of your irrational "arguments":

      First, a person cannot be bigot with something that agrees.

      Once again, Audi is a premium brand, if people want to buy a Q5 its because they like premium SUV's and they will buy it (except of you of course) no matter where it was assembled 'cause ITS AN AUDI!!!!! and well maybe you don't know difference between Sedan and SUV and neither Premium and Normal car brands.

      Puebla Plant builds Jetta and lower models, right know it's almost full of capacity 'cause of the increase of assembling lines for the New Beetle.

      Since Jetta VI's full specs were released and even when the car wasn't yet on the streets bad critics and low reliability ratings began, but all these negative opinions are because of the big downgrade in materials and components quality from Jetta V to Jetta VI and nothing is related with engineering or assembling, now Jetta VI has hard plastic interiors, rear drum brakes, rigid transverse link rear suspension, etc. nevertheless I think it is and will continue being a great car because of the German design and engineering.

      Again dude, get over it!!! and simply...... don't buy a Q5 made in Mexico, better buy a Hyundai Santa Fe, Kia Sorento or Susuki Grand Vitara..... what amazing choice swap!!!

      Peace!!
      Long Life Audi

      Jetta reliablilty had sucked far longer than the Mk VI's have been rolling around. My old JSW was a MK V and it was a POS, as were the ones before it. Look it up. This is a mistake and building a premium car in a cut-rate labor market detracts from the percieved value of the brand in general, and the Q5 in particular.
    10. riosdrummer's Avatar
    11. FractureCritical's Avatar
      Quote Originally Posted by riosdrummer
      Hey,

      you got your wish, enjoy it.

      As for me, plenty of other brands hocking $40k cars not built with cut rate labor.
      I'll just go there.
    12. riosdrummer's Avatar
      Good

      Enjoy it, but be careful, if it is a BMW, Mercedes Benz, Mazda, Honda, Toyota, it could've been made in Mexico, and Im sorry maybe you should switch from this forum to any other regarding a non Mexican assembling car brand