Germany’s largest independent carmaker and supplier, Karmann, has lost its contract to supply Audi with A4 Cabriolets.

However, it will soon start building the smaller A3 drop-top.

According to German publication Automobil Industrie, an Audi exec has revealed that Magna Steyr will supply convertible systems for the new A4.

Karmann has built the A4 Cabriolet since 2002 and constructed more than 135,000 units in that time, with 28,000 of the cars rolling off the production line last year alone. Karmann has already laid off 633 employees in the past 12 months and will be forced to cut another 140 jobs from its admin departments in coming months.

Audi’s top brass have confirmed that production for the new A3 Cabriolet is scheduled to start by late 2008. Pictured above is an accurate representation of the final styling of the new model and reveals that the new car will seat up to four passengers and have a slightly different front end from the regular A3 Hatchback.


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