The rise of Audi, can, in many ways, be charted back to the Quattro. It is how they continue to sell their machines, and how consumers buy into that particular dream.
A dream, however, as Lancia, Alfa-Romeo and in the not too distant past, Land-Rover demonstrated, is not enough. The dream must be backed up with a solidity of promise.
In 1982 this solidity was realised through the phrase ‘Vorsprung durch Technik’, ‘Advancement through technology’. The success of this phrase is made all the more remarkable that it was placed into a still Germanophobic society.
It was not the Quattro drivetrain, however, that formed the chassis of Audi’s success, but all the small things that add up to an efficient, well-built, satisfying product that pays regular tribute to the motoring writers cliche ‘hewn from solid’.
This weeks SHCOTW (A better title is in the lab, I promise) is a major piece of that culture. There aren’t many left of these remaining, with howmanyleft.co.uk showing a major fall in this early model’s numbers. This car over all other Audi products was featured both in Stephen Bayley’s book ‘Cars – Freedom, Style, Sex, Power, Motion, Colour, Everything‘ and The Design Museum’s ‘Fifty Cars That Changed The World‘. It is now surely safe to say this is a classic.
I give you two examples. One, surely the best model to find but a suspected money pit, and two, a relatively safe bet with a slightly steep price tag. Of course, life isn’t always so black and white and patience is the virtue within consumer society…
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