The History of Audi

Timeline created by £ric Lu
  • Foundations of Audi Begin

    Foundations of Audi Begin
    German automobile company Wanderer is established.
  • A. Horsh & Cie.

    A. Horsh & Cie.
    August Horsch establishes A. Horch & Cie. in Ehrenfield District, Cologne.
  • A. Horch & Cie. Relocates

    A. Horch & Cie. Relocates
    August Horch moves his company to Reichenbach im Vogtland in Saxony, Germany.
  • August Horch & Cie. Motorwagenwerke AG Founded

    August Horch & Cie. Motorwagenwerke AG Founded
    August Horch then founded August Horch & Cie. Motorwagenwerke AG in Zwickau, Germany (Saxony)
  • August Horch Leaves Motorwagenwerke

    August Horch Leaves Motorwagenwerke
    August Horche left Motorwagenwerke and founded his own company August Horch Automobilwerke GmbH in Zwickau, Germany (Saxony) He is then sued by former partners for trademark infringement. August loses his case.
  • August Horch Founds Audi Automobilwerke GmbH Zwickau

    August Horch Founds Audi Automobilwerke GmbH Zwickau
    Horch met with his business friends Paul and Franz Fikentscher from Zwickau, Germany. Eventually, they decided on a new name. Audi Automobilwerke GmbH Zwickau
  • Audi Type A

    Audi Type A
    In 1910, the Audi Type A was developed and placed into production. It was a 10/22 HP Sport-Phaeton featuring a 4-cylinder 4-stroke engine.
  • Audi Type B

    Audi Type B
    The Audi Type B was released later in 1910 and featured a 28 HP 4-cylinder 4-stroke engine.
  • Audi Type K

    Audi Type K
    The Audi Type K was the first commercial car in Germany to be equipped with a left-handed drive.
  • Audi is Formed

    Audi is Formed
    Jørgen Rasmussen, owner of Dampf-Kraft-Wagen buys majority of shares of U.S. automobile manufacturer Rickenbacker. Audi Automobilwerke GmbH Zwickau merges with DKW, Horch and Wanderer to form Audi. The logo with 4 circles represents each of the 4 parent companies. Logo, however is only used on racing cars, with individual commercial cars bearing only company logos.
  • Audi Temporarily Retires

    Audi Temporarily Retires
    At the beginning of World War II, Audi began to largely focus on producing smaller cars, reflecting the economic pressures. After delivering the final orders in 1939, Audi then closed down for more than 2 decades.
  • Audi Re-Emerges as An Auto Company

    Audi Re-Emerges as An Auto Company
    After decades of dormancy, the Audi plant reopened with help from Bavaria and the Marshall Plan aid services in Ingolstadt, Bavaria.
  • Auto-Union is Sold Then Resurrected

    Auto-Union is Sold Then Resurrected
    Daimler-Benz buys 87% shares in the Auto Union company and then in 1959, buys Auto Union out completely. Eventually, due to lack of profits, Auto Union was sold. However, the company that bought Auto Union also bought a large factory and new producion four-stroke engine. Using these advantages, the new owners began producing cars under the Audi name.
  • Volkswagen Buys Into Audi

    Volkswagen Buys Into Audi
    Volkswagen bought 50% shares in Audi, meaning it had control of trademarks of Auto Union and also had control of the new factory in Ingolstadt. Then, in 1966, they out the Ingolstandt factory and used is to build their Volkswagen Beetles. During this period, the population shifted towards 4-stroke engines because they were smoother than 2-stroke engines.
  • DKW Is Released

    DKW Is Released
    DKW had an association with 2-stroke engines that if would not forget, and because of this obsession, DKW was dumped by Volkswagen. The DKW F103, which was the most popoular DKW automobile at the time, was redesigned and later sold as the "Audi."
  • Audi is Resparked

    Audi is Resparked
    Interest in Audi was resparked when Ludwig Krauss, developed the first Audi 100 in secret. Heinz Nordhoff, Chief of Volkswagen, explicitly forbade any cars would be developed under Auto Union (Audi)'s name. Kraus was afraid that Auto Union's heritage would be smothered by Volkswagen and so he designed the Audi 100 in secret. However, after the production in secret by Kraus, the car impressed Nordhoff, and it was placed into production.
  • Auto Union Merges With NSU

    Auto Union Merges With NSU
    Auto Union merges with NSU, which was associated with producing motorcycles, but also produced small cars. This was mainly due to engine problems that could not be overcome by NSU alone, and so NSU was merged into Auto Union. By merging with NSU, Auto Union also acquired the Neckarsulm plant near Stuttgart.
  • Audi Reemerges as A Separate Brand

    Audi Reemerges as A Separate Brand
    For the first time since the World War II, Audi was able to market its vehicles as a separate brand from Volkswagen. The new company name was Audi NSU Auto Union AG.
  • Audi 80/Fox

    Audi 80/Fox
    The Audi 80 or Audi Fox was produced in 1972 and also was the base design of the Volkswagen Passat.
  • Audi 50

    Audi 50
    In 1974, the Audi 50 was designed and produced. Eventually, this car was absorbed by Volkswagen and renamed the Volkswagen Polo.
  • Audi Quattro

    Audi Quattro
    During this time, Audi was focused mainly on producing commercial cars. However, Audi wanted to expand its product range and the Audi Quattro was developed. The Audi Quattro was a turbo-charged coupe which also was the first permanent all-wheel drive car to be mass-produced in Germany.
  • Audi S4 and S6 Classes

    Audi S4 and S6 Classes
    Eventually, the Audi Quattro was adapted into other Audi cars and the design was the basis of the Audi S4 and S6 classes for commercial use.
  • Audi Renamed

    Audi Renamed
    With NSU and Auto Union dissolved, Audi changed its name from Audi NSU Auto Union AG to Audi AG
  • Audi 90 Redesigned

    Audi 90 Redesigned
    The Audi 90 was redesigned and for smoother aesthetics and a more advanced set of standard functions. Also, purchasers were given a choice of either Saloon, Coupe or Cabriolet body styles.
  • Audi V8

    Audi V8
    Audi decided to shift its target population to compete with BMW and Mercedes-Benz and so the Audi V8 was designed. It was based off the Audi 100 but had noticeable changes made to the bodywork and grille.
  • 5-Cylinder Upgrades

    5-Cylinder Upgrades
    The Audi 90s and 100s were refitted and upgraded so that all standard Audis 90s and 100s after would have 5-cylinder engines.
  • Audi 80 Refitted

    Audi 80 Refitted
    The Audi 80 was refitted with a 4-cylinder engine instead of 2-cylinder engines in previous models for better efficiency.
  • Audi S6 Refurnished

    Audi S6 Refurnished
    The Audi S4 was refurnished and became the next class of Audi S' and was named the Audi S6. Featuring Aluminum chassis and more advanced standard functions.
  • Audi A4

    Audi A4
    The Audi A4 was Audi's move to phase out the Audi 100. It featured a sleeker chassis and a more powerful engine, as well as newer features.
  • Audi TT

    Audi TT
    The Audi TT is a small 2-doored sports car that represented Audi's market in small sports cars.
  • Audi A2

    Audi A2
    The Audi A2 was one of the first Audi cars to use an aluminum chassis and structure. It was a 4-5 seater Supermini-Style Car
  • DRLs

    DRLs
    Audi began incorporating LED Daytime Running Lights which spread to all models and became a distinctive trademark of Audi.
  • Audi R8

    Audi R8
    The Audi R8 is one of the most recent vehicles implemented into the Audi production line. It is a luxury 2-seater sports car and includes all standard Audi features including DRLs and more.
  • Audi Q7

    Audi Q7
    The Q7 is a luxury crossover vehicle from Audi combining elements of a sedan and an SUV.
  • Present Day

    Present Day
    To this day, Audi remains one of the top automobile companies for the upper-class among sports car manufacturers and executive boards. It is one of the most popular German automobile companies alongside Mercedes-Benz and BMW.
  • The Future

    The Future
    For the future, Audi could design a car based off the S6 class to be more efficient and maybe a hybrid of rechargeable eco-friendly car to keep up with the introduction of eco-friendly cars into today's automobile market.