11 Aug 2021
The Audi slogan “Vorsprung durch Technik” that has come to define our brand marks its 50th anniversary this year.
In light of this milestone, we trace the origins of Audi’s iconic slogan and reflect on its impact by covering some of Audi’s greatest achievements over the last five decades.
Audi’s slogan, which translates as “progress through technology”, was introduced in January 1971 to reflect the technological diversity of the range of car models that emerged following the merger of two companies – Auto Union GmbH and Neckarsulmer NSU Motorenwerke.
In terms of engine design, Audi’s diverse product range was exciting and cutting-edge for its time, spanning from water-cooled four-cylinder engines of the Audi 60 and 100, to the rotary engine of the NSU Ro 80.
One of the major breakthroughs emerging from the “Vorsprung durch Technik” ethos was the all-wheel drive Audi quattro. Unveiled at the 1980 Geneva Motor Show, it was a technological marvel requiring three years of intensive research and development dedicated to the vision of developing a new type of car that had not existed then.
It was truly “Vorsprung durch Technik” in action and the Audi quattro soon proved its mettle in competitions. Due to its stellar off-road manoeuvrability, the Audi quattro saw unbroken winning streaks in the hill-climbing race at Pike Peaks in the Rocky Mountains throughout the 1980s.