Audi Tradition to celebrate multiple anniversaries in 2024

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The most notable anniversaries at a glance: In the “Anniversary Dates 2024” digital booklet, Audi Tradition details this year’s anniversary highlights and summarizes over 30 historically significant events spanning products, the company, and motorsports.

The anniversaries that Audi Tradition is celebrating in 2024 are as varied as the history of the brand with the four rings itself. The Audi 50 turns 50, the Auto Union plant in Ingolstadt turns 75, and Audi founder August Horch established his first company in Cologne 125 years ago. The anniversary booklet lists over 30 anniversaries, including a look at Audi models launched over 30 years ago receiving their “H” number plates in 2024. Among these is the Audi A8; its launch in 1994 marked Audi’s entry into the luxury class. Made in Neckarsulm and unveiled at the Geneva International Motor Show, the sedan pioneered the Audi Space Frame, a body made entirely of aluminum. The iconic Avant RS2 also turns 30 in 2024. Developed as a joint project between Audi and Porsche, the Avant RS2 established the tradition of RS high-performance models. The booklet devotes an entire chapter to the RS2.

Audi Sport quattro turns 40: A powerful production car from Germany

For Audi Sport, 1984 turned out to be especially successful. The season kicked off with a victory when Walter Röhrl won the legendary Monte Carlo Rally in an Audi quattro in January. Stig Blomqvist and his co-driver Björn Cederberg went on to win the World Drivers’ title and Audi took the World Manufacturers’ title. The season ended in victory for Harald Demuth. Alongside Willy Lux, Demuth won the German Rally Champion title ahead of schedule in an Audi quattro at the International Sachs Baltic Rally, the ninth round of the German Rally Championship. French driver Michèle Mouton also raised eyebrows 40 years ago. At Pikes Peak, she drove an Audi Sport quattro to victory in the rally car class for Audi. Since homologation required a production run of 200 vehicles, the Sport quattro has been available in both road and rally versions since 1984. Often called “The Short One” due to its shortened wheelbase, the 306 PS version was the most powerful production car from Germany at the time. At the end of April 1984, the 200 Audi Sport quattro units required for homologation were completed. In early May, the Group B rally version of the Sport quattro debuted at the Corsica Rally; an entire chapter in the new anniversary booklet tells the story.

The Auto Union Grand Prix racecar turns 90: The dawn of the Silver Arrows

Half a century earlier, 90 years ago, Auto Union was already active in international motorsports: After the merger of Audi, DKW, Horch, and Wanderer in 1932, the newly formed Auto Union AG wanted to promote the new group name “Auto Union” and the distinctive four-ring emblem. Ferdinand Porsche, who had already been commissioned to build a racecar before the merger with the Wanderer factories, was asked to build a racecar for Auto Union. The result was as sensational as it was groundbreaking: The new 4.4-liter engine with 16 cylinders, a supercharger, and an output of 295 PS was mounted in the middle of the vehicle, directly behind the driver. This design gave the racecar its unusual appearance with a short front end, anticipating the drivetrain still used in Formula 1 racecars today. The Auto Union racecar made its first official appearance at the AVUS in Berlin on March 6, 1934, with Hans Stuck at the wheel. A few weeks later, on May 27, 1934, the Auto Union Type A, as it was called internally, made its debut on the international racing scene, ushering in the booming era of the Auto Union Silver Arrows.