Audi goes all Herman Melville on us to highlight benefits of Quattro

One man's new toy can be another's Moby Dick. Typically we'd mean that in a figurative sense, but Audi has taken things one step towards the literal – or literary – with its latest advertising spot.

The commercial centers around a Captain Ahab-like tow truck driver who has, when the roads turn white with deep snow, hooked just about everything on the road. Everything, that is, except the elusive Quattro.

The 60-second spot – called "Ahab" – features the latest A6, and is scheduled to air tomorrow during the NFL division playoffs (making it something of a junior Super Bowl ad). It will be followed by a 30-second version that will air nationally on other broadcasts, and Audi is building a broader digital content campaign around the ad as well, including a Facebook app to follow. You, however, don't have to wait for all that to see the clever clip: just click past the jump.

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Audi Launches Campaign to Celebrate Revolutionary quattro™ All-Wheel Drive Technology

- New :60 TV spot to debut nationally during NFL division playoffs
- Spot entitled "Ahab" takes inspiration from classic Herman Melville novel
- Campaign centered around Audi quattro with digital content, Facebook app and YouTube playlist

Herndon, Va., January 13, 2012 – Audi today announced a new advertising and marketing campaign to celebrate its innovative all-wheel drive technology, quattro™. Audi quattro is the top-selling luxury all-wheel drive system in the world, providing superior traction and handling and a balanced drive no matter the road condition. Audi is the only premium manufacturer to offer all-wheel drive on every one of its models.

The new campaign, with the tagline "the legendary Audi quattro," consists of a :60 television spot that will kick off during the National Football League division playoffs on Jan. 14. The ad will also air nationally as a :30 spot. Entitled "Ahab," the spot turns to one of the all-time classics in American literature for inspiration to help demonstrate the superiority of the Audi quattro all-wheel drive system on the toughest winter roads. The spot re-imagines Herman Melville's epic struggle between obsessed sea captain and the elusive white whale, but in Audi's modern incarnation, Ahab is a tow truck driver battling snowdrifts and whiteout conditions and his nemesis, the Audi quattro.

"Audi quattro has been a part of the brand's DNA for over 30 years and is core to the performance and design of Audi vehicles," said Scott Keogh, Chief Marketing Officer, Audi of America. "With this new campaign, Audi aims to celebrate its pioneer technology and continual commitment to its development, while increasing Audi's brand image and awareness, particularly of our all-wheel drive experience."

In addition to the "Ahab" broadcast spots, the campaign utilizes multiple platforms to bring to life the Audi quattro story, including display and mobile banners on weather and ski sites, online video placements and banners in enthusiast communities, refreshed content on Audi's "30+ Years of quattro" Facebook app and a new quattro playlist on YouTube.

As the first manufacturer to develop all-wheel drive technology for production sedans, Audi introduced quattro over three decades ago, setting the benchmark for driver confidence and performance. The advantage of all-wheel drive was most apparent when Audi introduced quattro to the World Rally Championship in 1981, resulting in an astounding 24 wins and a number of World Championships. The technology was so superior that it was later deemed an "unfair advantage" and banned from road racing altogether after repeatedly dominating the field.

Today, in that same competitive spirit, quattro all-wheel drive continues to be refined. In Audi vehicles with a longitudinal engine configuration, quattro is essentially a mechanical system with a self-locking center differential and continuously variable torque distribution. Audi quattro instantly responds to wheel speed differences and dynamically adjusts power to the wheels with the best traction. It is supported by advanced electronic control systems that together offer numerous benefits over other all-wheel drive systems. Featuring a 40:60 rear torque bias, the latest version of quattro offers sports car-like performance and handling, distributing traction to all four wheels for quicker off-the-line power and the ability to take on a 37.5 degree incline.

Audi quattro all-wheel drive is available on all models, including the new 2012 Audi A6, one of Audi's most innovative and technologically-advanced models to date. The A6 boasts an all-aluminum Audi 3.0 L TFSI® supercharged V6 engine with 310 horsepower, and makes up to 2,000 decisions per second to assist the driver. Safety in the all-new Audi A6 is enhanced by a thermal imaging camera with Night Vision Assistant as well as the Audi Pre-Sense Plus safety system. Other intelligent features include head-up display and a MMI® Touch pad that recognizes handwriting in multiple languages. Audi is the first company worldwide to feature factory-installed wireless internet, enabling features such as Audi connect™ for real-time weather, traffic news and live fuel prices, and MMI Navigation with 3-D Google Earth™ images.

Audi of America, Inc. and its U.S. dealers offer a full line of German-engineered luxury vehicles. AUDI AG is among the most successful luxury automotive brands globally. Audi was a top-performing luxury brand in Europe during 2011, and broke all-time company sales records in the U.S. Through 2016, AUDI AG will invest about $17 billion on new products and technologies. Visit or for more information regarding Audi vehicle and business issues.

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