Model: Production Type
Developer: NERV-01 (America)
Pilot: Touji Suzuhara
Evangelion Unit-03, also referred to as Eva-03, is the fourth Evangelion construct. It was created and assembled at NERV-01 in America, and rushed to Japan following the disaster with Evangelion Unit-04. During transport the unit is infected by the parasitic Bardiel, the Thirteenth Angel, and upon activation at NERV's Matsushiro site, the unit is overtaken by the Angel. This causes a massive explosion which seriously injures several senior NERV personnel, including NERV Operations Director Misato Katsuragi and Dr. Ritsuko Akagi.
Although Evangelion Unit-03 is a Production Model akin to that of Evangelion Unit-02, its physical construction is similar to that of Evangelion Unit-01 (two distinct eyes, a wicked smile, dark armor, and red bodily fluid). The physical characteristics of this unit may have finalized before the release of the Production Model specs.
Evangelion Unit-03 is piloted by Touji Suzuhara, the Fourth Child. He is not actually able to pilot the unit before it is hijacked by Bardiel, but he is trapped inside it throughout the ordeal. As a result Shinji Ikari, the Third Child and pilot of Evangelion Unit-01, refuses to fight.
Evangelion Unit-03 and Bardiel are eventually destroyed by Unit-01 under the control of the Dummy System, which was activated forcefully as ordered by Gendo Ikari. The brutal battle costs Touji his left leg, leaving him hospitalized for the rest of the series.
It is unknown if Evangelion Unit-03 possessed a human Soul within its Core like Evangelion Unit-01 and Evangelion Unit-02. The lack of information on this matter often triggers speculation that the Evangelion Units do not require the presence of a second Soul to function. However, Ritsuko Akagi is also on record as saying "a Core may be prepared for this child," which may mean that a second soul was in fact incorporated into the Core of Evangelion Unit-03 during this preparation.