Eventful and varied - the history of AUDI AG

The history of AUDI AG extends back to the 19th century. Find out more about the great personalities from the company’s 100-plus years of history. Learn about the fascinating evolution of the various models and major milestones in the fields of car manufacturing, motorcycle, engine production and motor racing.

a4

‘90s Cult Car: 25 Years of the Audi A4

25 years ago, the first Audi A4 took to the streets and quickly became a best-seller. Read here how this model became a cult car and freed Audi from its outdated image.

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    1899: Founding

    August Horch founded his first automobile company, August Horch & Cie, in Cologne in 1899. Shortly after that, in 1909, he set up a new automobile company in Zwickau, which has been operating under the name Audiwerke AG, Zwickau since 1910. This marked the birth of the modern company’s name.

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    1932: Four rings – four brands

    Four interlocking rings symbolised the merger of four automobile manufacturers based in the German state of Saxony: Audi, DKW, Horch and Wanderer became Auto Union AG. Here are brief details of the roots of today’s AUDI AG.

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    1945: End and recommencement

    In 1945, after the war had ended, Auto Union AG's premises were located in the zone occupied by the Soviet forces, who expropriated its assets, dismantled the plant and had the company removed from the Commercial Register of the city of Chemnitz in 1948. 1949/1950, the Auto Union GmbH was founded in Ingolstadt newly.

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    1971: Vorsprung durch Technik

    Focused on the NSU Ro 80, a car that was far ahead of its time, a new advertising slogan was introduced in 1971, which has since become the key message underlining the expertise of the company: “Vorsprung durch Technik” [“Advancement through Technology”].