Paul Jaray was an Austrian-born engineer who transferred his aerodynamic designs for zeppelins to the smaller canvas of the automobile. His work included vehicles like the Tatra T77 and T87, and cars inspired by his work and patents included the Chrysler Airflow and Ford Zephyr.

Most of his creations weren't exactly pretty, however, as the rebodied Audi concept car above amply demonstrates. A new Audi ad shows how far the brand has come in the looks department by contrasting that streamlined-but-ugly-duckling coupe with the 2012 A5, with a little help from singer Danny Kaye and Hans Christian Andersen. We like the spot quite a bit, but wonder if Audi wouldn't have been better served by having it pitch the aerodynamic beauty of the A7 instead. Follow the jump to check it out.



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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 27 Comments
      A. Harlan
      • 2 Years Ago
      I think the esthetics of auto design are as changeable as fashion design in haute couture clothing.... there is a lot of herd mentality in the auto design world. Some years, decades or designs are much more appealing than others. Apex.... below has it about right on Audi.
      Jonathan Arena
      • 2 Years Ago
      0:41 is pure sex
      KAG
      • 2 Years Ago
      Wanted one ever since they came out. Looks good with the black rims and new headlights.
      Differentberries
      • 2 Years Ago
      ~1975 - 1995 was the pinnacle of automotive design. Cars were cars. Their angular lines stressed that they were man made objects, albeit elegant and understated ones. Nowadays the fat Superfluous curves seem so unnatural to what a car is. That said the new A5 is one of the few pretty 21st century cars.
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Differentberries
        [blocked]
          - v o c t u s -
          • 2 Years Ago
          no. No. He's almost exactly right. Save for the odd bulbous boat or moon-mobile coupe, the era of YES, THIS IS A MACHINE, GOT A PROBLEM WITH THAT? ended in about the mid nineties. I would NOT say that it was the pinnacle of automotive design. I would reserve that for the grand elegance of the 20's and 30's. I do agree with the sentiment, however. I LOVE cars that don't wave their nonsensical bulges and swoops in your face. The new 3-series is a great example of retro-modern design. Flat and notchy elegance without unreasonable flair. I kind of like the "space shuttle age" of retrofuturism.
        robespierex
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Differentberries
        The '96 Bulls, the '27 Yankees, and '75 - '95 automotive design. The Trifectorate.
      4gasem
      • 2 Years Ago
      I personally think the A and S5 are beautiful looking. Wide shoulders and big grill... I think it'll go down as one of the best looking Audi's. JMO of course.
        Pdexter
        • 2 Years Ago
        @4gasem
        A5 is probably the best looking of the current line. Big fan of the last gen A6 Allroad Quattro as well. Never myself really got the complain in this blog on the comment section about them looking the same. I find the design looking great, why should i care that the cars share the same design language?
      trzjax
      • 2 Years Ago
      Elegant blandness is how I would describe Audi design language (doesn't apply to R8 though)
      - v o c t u s -
      • 2 Years Ago
      what the hell is ugly about the new A5 or any current Audi for that matter? why even take that angle?
        RS4AWLEY
        • 2 Years Ago
        @- v o c t u s -
        They are claiming the A5 is NOT an ugly ducking, however, their original streamline design was...
      fidesnemo2003
      • 2 Years Ago
      I love the Ugly Duckling car, I'd have one!
      robespierex
      • 2 Years Ago
      A slight modernization of the former DRLs would have kept the character alive, rather than doubling the A4's. A little uniformity is good, but I prefer the old ones. A4/5 also need an interior update pretty bad now too. Just ok.
        RS4AWLEY
        • 2 Years Ago
        @robespierex
        The A4 and A5 LED DRL's are very different for the refresh, and the interior is refreshed, too!
        • 2 Years Ago
        @robespierex
        [blocked]
      Tony Power
      • 2 Years Ago
      Reckon the 'ugly duckling' would turn far more heads than the latest A5
      k_m94
      • 2 Years Ago
      I find the A/S/RS5 were prettier before the 2013 MY refresh, which makes them look flatter, less curvaceous, and less characterfull. The pre refresh A5, as well as the A7, TTRS, and R8, remain some of the best looking Audi models ever. In terms of concepts, the A3 sedan concept (more like RS3) and Quattro also press the right buttons.
      • 2 Years Ago
      [blocked]
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