70 years of Audi in Ingolstadt: three special exhibitions at the Audi Forum

“W49 – New Start in Ingolstadt” temporary exhibition at Audi museum mobile:

September 3, 1949, marks an important date in the history of AUDI AG. The founding of Auto Union GmbH in Ingolstadt on this day launched a new chapter in the history of the automobile manufacturer, which had previously been based in Germany’s federal state of Saxony. Four years after the end of the war, the company commenced production in old buildings of the former Ingolstadt fortress. This was the start of a success story for both the car manufacturer and Ingolstadt.

With the “W49” exhibit, Audi takes a very special look back on the connection between the company and the city. “49” stands for the year it all began. The “W” originally meant “West” and distinguished the first motorcycle built in Ingolstadt from those built in the “East.” In the description of the exhibition organizers, however, the “W” symbolizes more – including the many chapters of the mutual relationship between both partners over the years, described with German words that begin with the letter: “Weggang” (departure), “Wiederaufbau” (reconstruction), “Wagemut” (adventurousness), “Wachstum” (growth), “Wirtschaftskraft” (economic strength) and “Wandel der Zeit” (change over time). The small company named Auto Union GmbH has since evolved into a premium manufacturer of automobiles with worldwide operations, and the small provincial town has developed into a dynamic and economically strong city – Audi and Ingolstadt.

The new temporary exhibition shows the company’s first ten years in Ingolstadt from 1949 to 1959 – and quite deliberately in a double sense: The images allow the visitor to change perspective, offering a view through “Audi glasses” as well as from the viewpoint of the city. Audi is exhibiting the first products of the newly founded Auto Union GmbH, including the DKW Schnelllaster and the DKW RT 125 W motorcycle, as well as other important models from the early automotive production. The exhibition also examines the underlying conditions in the company’s new home, from the political restart with a young democracy and the refugees of the day to daily life and the reconstruction in Ingolstadt.

“One Plant – 1,000 Stories” Special exhibition in the building Market and Customer (Markt und Kunde, A51): 

The plant in the north of Ingolstadt has been the heart of the Audi Group for more than 60 years now. Today a team of about 44,000 people work to maintain the company’s “Vorsprung durch Technik.” The brand with the four rings moved into its new production facilities in the summer of 1959. The exhibition in the building Market and Customer A51 focuses on the milestones and highlights of the Ingolstadt site from the end of the 1950s to today. The plant is not the only thing that has evolved. For example, a series of pictures also shows how the Audi logo has changed over time. It still consisted of the so-called “Audi oval” in 1978. The four rings didn’t take its place until 1985. They symbolize the brands Audi, DKW, Horch and Wanderer. The journey through time includes important models like the DKW Junior de Luxe, the rebirth of Audi in 1965, and the absolute bestsellers for the site – the Audi 80 and Audi A4. The legendary quattro drive is also given its due in this special exhibition. One commercial from the past sparked a furor at the time: In 1986, rally driver Harald Demuth drove an Audi 100 CS quattro up the Pitkävuori ski jump in Finland. A series of photos shows this historical highlight and remakes of the commercial in 2005 and 2019.

“Consistently Future” special exhibition in the Audi Piazza:

Audi is positioning itself for the future. In a pavilion in the Audi Piazza, the company is presenting a preview of future investments in the Ingolstadt location. Among other things, the new “Ingolstadt Audi” train stop and the IN-Campus are being presented. The train stop, which will be Ingolstadt’s third train station, is due to open in December 2019. The new central platform will feature a barrier-free connection to both the Audi plant and the public transport network. The IN-Campus is being built in the east of the city of Ingolstadt. IN-Campus GmbH, a joint venture of AUDI AG and the city of Ingolstadt, is refurbishing the site of a former oil refinery for the project and converting it into a technology park – transforming it from a refinery site to a cutting-edge technology center.

Two victories for the Audi R8 LMS in Thailand

Audi R8 LMS GT4

Second place at Watkins Glen: Team Rearden Racing impressed with a strong performance on the sixth race weekend of the Pirelli GT4 America SprintX at Watkins Glen. In a field of 23 entrants, Vesko Kozarov/Jeff Burton in the first of two races finished runners-up in an Audi R8 LMS GT4. Consequently, as previously in the second event in Virginia, they scored the full number of points in the AM classification for the third time. 

Audi Sport Seyffarth R8 LMS Cup

Rogalski extends lead of the standings: Robin Rogalski only needed two third places on the fifth race weekend of the Audi Sport Seyffarth R8 LMS Cup to slightly extend his lead of the standings. The German had traveled to Most with a bolster of 16 points and returned with a 17-point advantage. He showed his strongest performance in the first round when he claimed a podium finish after starting from sixth on the grid. Like a week earlier at the Lausitzring, rookie Maximilian Paul again won both races on the Czech race track. His best immediate rival in the first heat was Tim Reiter, who stood on the podium for the first time. In the second race, Jedrzej Szczesniak from Poland took second position and thus kept the runner-up’s spot in the standings in front of the Swiss Rudolf Rhyn. Szczesniak benefited from an error on Reiter’s part because the 20-year-old student thought the race had ended one lap before the finish. 

Audi RS 3 LMS (TCR)

Two victories at Watkins Glen: Michael McCann Jr. managed an impeccable weekend in the TC America. The American with Team McCann Racing won both sprint races in an Audi RS 3 LMS with more than a two-second advantage in the sixth event at Watkins Glen. In the TCR Cup class, one driver was dominant throughout the weekend as well: Canadian Travis Hill in an Audi RS 3 LMS with a dual-clutch transmission scored class victory in both races for TWOth Autosport.

Third victory for Audi in TCR Italy: On the fifth race weekend of the TCR Italy an Audi driver won a race for the third time. Enrico Bettera, who had previously stood on the top step of the podium at the opening event at Monza, was again unbeatable in the first race at Imola in an Audi RS 3 LMS. During the course of 14 laps, he pulled clear of his closest rival by 3.4 seconds. In the standings, he is ranked in fourth position in the 23-strong field as the best Audi driver. In the second race, Jacopo Guidetti in another Audi RS 3 LMS achieved third position. 

Second victory in the TCR DSG Endurance: Ermanno Dionisio and Giacomo Barri won a round of the TCR DSG Endurance for the second time. Following their success at Vallelunga in May, the driver pairing from BF Motorsport prevailed again at Imola, with a one-second advantage after two hours of racing. In the standings, the two drivers as runners-up have reduced their gap to Alessandro and Giovanni Altoè by eight to 18 points before the finale. At the same time, Dionisio before the finale at Mugello in October is leading the Gentleman classification of the endurance racing series. 

Commanding performance in China: The Audi RS 3 LMS dominated its class in the third round of the China Endurance Championship. Team New Faster after 93 race laps locked out the podium. The victorious driver trio of Sun Junlong/Liang Zhiwei/Zou Balong won the endurance race at Shanghai with a one-lap advantage.

Russell Ingall on podium again: In the TCR Australia, Russell Ingall continued his string of podium results in an Audi RS 3 LMS. The 55-year-old touring car expert, who on the fourth race weekend had clinched a third and two second places, secured another trophy in the fifth event at Winton. In the third sprint on the circuit in the South Australian state of Victoria, he crossed the finish line for the Melbourne Performance Centre in third position. 

Coming up next week

06–07/09 Zolder (B), rounds 13 and 14, DMV GTC

06–08/09 Hungaroring (H), rounds 9 and 10, Blancpain GT World Challenge Europe

06–08/09 Tianjin (CN), rounds 9 and 10, China GT Championship

06–08/09 Brno (CZ), rounds 11 and 12, Eset V4 Cup

07/09 Nürburgring (D), round 6, VLN Endurance Championship Nürburgring

07/09 Velo Città (BR), round 5, Endurance Brasil

07–08/09 Sochi (RUS), rounds 13 and 14, TCR Russia

07–08/09 Silverstone (GB), rounds 9 and 10, International GT Open

07–08/09 Silverstone (GB), rounds 7 and 8, GT Open Cup

07–08/09 Autopolis (J), round 6, Super GT

07–08/09 Brno (CZ), rounds 14 and 15, FIA CEZ

07–08/09 Jyllandsringen (DK), rounds 11 and 12, TCR Scandinavia

08/09 Wakefield (AUS), rounds 7 and 8, CAMS NSW Production Sports Car Championship

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