The first Audi Quattro unveiled in Geneva in 1980 – Click above for high-res image
Audi's Quattro system is 30 this year, introduced on the Ur-Quattro at the 1980 Geneva Motor Show. To celebrate, Audi has a full year of activities planned, including a special exhibition at the Audi Forum Ingolstadt, a place at the Techno Classica in Essen, and Audi Tradition hauling momentous examples of Quattro to shows around Europe.
It's interesting to ponder where Audi would have gone without Quattro. In America the tech and halo associations that emanated from the marque's Group B rally eating monsters helped it go from being perceived as a maker of really nice VWs to a luxury line with a unique, finessed brawn. We do wonder, though, what the original Quattro would say to a TT... Follow the jump for Audi's press release and a glimpse of where you can find vintage Audis and Auto Unions throughout the year.
Related GalleryAudi Quattro's 30th Anniversary
Audi Tradition celebrates the 30th anniversary of quattro
- Special exhibition at the Audi museum mobile
- Attendance at the world's largest classic car show, the Techno Classica in Essen
- Extensive historical programme for 2010
INGOLSTADT, Germany, Feb 12, 2010 - This year Audi once again has many historically significant events to celebrate, with one especially important anniversary: 30 years of quattro. At the world's largest classic car show, the Techno Classica in Essen, Germany (April 7 – 11), Audi Tradition will therefore be exhibiting four Audi quattro models of outstanding interest. And at the museum mobile in the Audi Forum Ingolstadt, there will be a special exhibition from April 28 to July 31 devoted to "30 Years of quattro". This year Audi Tradition is taking its motor-vehicle treasures to an unusually large number of events.
Audi Tradition will for instance be at the Grand Prix Historique in Monaco (May 1 and 2), an event in which it participated for the first time two years ago. On this occasion, two Auto Union Silver Arrow racing cars will be seen in action on this most classic of all Formula One racing circuits: the Auto Union Type C dating from 1936 and the Auto Union Type D with twin-supercharger engine (1939). Audi Tradition is also returning to the "Schottenring Classic Grand Prix" on August 14 and 15, an event for motorcycles only, recalling the earlier heyday of DKW and NSU bikes – models that wrote history in world championship events in their time.
Audi Tradition will be present for the first time at the Classic Days held on July 30 and August 1 at Schloss Dyck (Dyck Castle) in Jüchen near Düsseldorf. Here too an Auto Union Grand Prix racing car will be seen in action, and also the Audi 200 Trans Am dating from 1988. Another premiere will be the Metz Rally in Stein near Nuremberg (April 23 and 24), where a 1979 Audi 80 Rallye is to be entered. Audi Tradition will also be in attendance at a new exhibition: "Klassikwelt Bodensee" (Lake Constance Classic World) from June 3 to 6 in Friedrichshafen. The topic here will be the "Electric Car Heritage" of AUDI AG – electrically propelled vehicles going back as far as the 1920s.
And of course Audi Tradition will be running its vehicles again at the world's largest historic car event, the Goodwood Festival of Speed (July 2 to 4) in England. Every year the Earl of March extends a most welcome invitation to the historic motor-sport elite. The 1939 Auto Union Type D Grand Prix racing car with its twin-supercharger engine will be among the treasures from Audi Tradition's collection to roar up the hill in the park of his country house.
Nor will Audi Tradition fail to participate in this year's classic oldtimer rallies such as the Silvretta Classic (July 8 to 11), the Ennstal Classic (July 14 to 17) and the Gran Premio Nuvolari (September 16 to 19). Events at which the brand with the four-ring emblem is the main sponsor are the Danube Classic in Ingolstadt (June 24 to 26), the Heidelberg Historic (July 15 to 17) and the Eifel Classic Rally at the Nurburg Ring (September 30 to October 2).
The 30th anniversary of quattro is accompanied in 2010 by a second major jubilee year: 125 years of the Wanderer company. Based in Chemnitz, Wanderer was represented by one of the four rings in the company logo, and built cars and motorcycles until the outbreak of the Second World War. To commemorate this anniversary, Audi Tradition will be taking part in the "125 Years of Wanderer" meeting from September 2 to 5 in Leipzig and Chemnitz.