Audi company founded in 1910 by a young engineer August Horch. It was his second attempt to open a business: the first company, «Horch & Co», was created in 1899. However, in 1909 he was forced to leave «Horch & Co» by the court. The reason for the disagreement with partner lenders.
The new company Horch founded in the town of Chemnitz, initially the same as the previous one, bore his name. When this became known the city authorities, the court awarded the new firm other name, «Audi». Some sources claim that he invented one of the business partners Horch. He just proposed to use the same word, «Horch» (which translated from German means “listen”), but in the Latin version – «Audi».
Audi logo represents four silver rings. They symbolize held in 1932, the union of four companies – DKW, Audi, Horch and Wanderer – in the automaker Auto Union. Initially, the emblem of Audi is only installed on cars that are designed for racing and on the production models flaunted nameplates – specially made plates.
In 1911, the debut car – Audi V, first took part in the race for the Cup of the Alps in Austria, and in 1912-1914 an improved version of this model once again participated in the Alpine Cup and has already achieved a very respectable success. With this car was named Alpensieger – “conqueror of the Alps.”
In 1921, Audi introduced the first car with a left-hand drive – in those days it was a breakthrough. Innovation has been and manufacture of front-wheel cars: in 1931 Audi revealed to the world DKW F1, inexpensive and compact car.
By the mid-1930s, after the merger of four companies, company Audi has become the second largest car manufacturer in Germany. In 1934, in order to raise the profile and awareness of the Audi brand took part in the most prestigious motor racing Grand Prix. Over the next years cars “Silver Arrow” won prizes in races and championships around the world, setting a huge amount of records.
In 1945, the company’s factories, which were located in the zone occupied by Soviet troops, have been dismantled, and the company should be deleted from the Commercial Register of Chemnitz. Shortly before the end of the war, the Audi evacuated to Bavaria. There have been launched by the first attempts to restore the group. At the end of 1945 was built warehouse of spare parts Auto Unuion. It took four years before it was restored production of the company’s products. In the late 1950s revived concern was again registered in the city registry.
In 1964 the company became part of the Volkswagen Group. Volkswagen initially did not want to produce its own Audi car models. But Ludwig Kraus, head of the design department, decided to secretly develop a new model of Audi. The result was the legendary Audi 100, which was a great success. So the company has retained its right to individuality.
In 1974, the design department was headed by Ferdinand Pёh. Under his company has reached unprecedented heights. Audi is the world’s first began producing vehicles with permanent all-wheel drive four-wheel drive. In 1985, the Audi head office was moved back to Bavaria. Audi’s subsequent success was due to a number of technical innovations. Among them – Fully galvanized body, aerodynamic design, the use of petrol engines with turbocharging and fuel-efficient diesel engines with direct injection technology, hybrid drive, heavy duty eight- and twelve-cylinder engine.
Interesting facts, technology and motorsport
Audi was the first company, which began to carry out crash tests (since 1938).
The Audi 80 in North America was sold initially under the name Audi Fox, and later – as the Audi 4000.
Concern Audi was the first automaker to create your own virtual world in the vast resource of PlayStation Home. It offers visitors – tours of the virtual space Audi Space and the opportunity to participate in the race circuits Vertical Run.
Cars Audi became the winners of the prestigious Le Mans 24 three times – in 2000, 2001 and 2002. In honor of this great success in 2003 in Frankfurt was presented sporty concept car Audi Le Mans quattro.