February 6, 2002

Audi of America, Inc. Launches Inspiring New Communications During Olympics

AUBURN HILLS, Mich. - Any athlete knows it takes more than just being good to be an Olympian. It takes a philosophy - a belief, a spirit, a work ethic - that is a way of life.

Audi has a similar attitude: Never quit. Never do the expected. Never rest on your laurels. Never think great is good enough. Never follow.

During the 2002 Winter Olympic Games in Salt Lake City, beginning February 8, Audi of America will debut a new marketing communications theme - Never Follow - beginning with a 60-second, multi-product commercial called "Spirit."

The new marketing communications theme was developed by Audi's advertising agency, McKinney & Silver. Four different commercials will highlight elements of Audi's brand DNA (advanced technology, design, performance and emotion) and the passion it displays for automotive manufacturing.

"For a theme line to work, it has to be true to the core of the company, and it has to be absolutely representative of the customer attitude," said Len Hunt, vice president of Audi of America, Inc. "Just look at Audi's continually growing list of advanced technologies, from aluminum to TDI expertise."

Audi, founded in 1910 by industry pioneer August Horch, has led automotive design with its breakthrough luxury A8 flagship, the authentic German sports car Audi TT, distinctive A6, and the all-new A4. Audi also has driven technology with its legendary quattro® all-wheel drive and its new multitronic® continuously variable automatic transmission.

The "Never Follow" marketing communications theme also will appear in national newspapers, in a range of industry enthusiast magazines and on the Internet. Other television commercials include the Audi TT "Guggenheim," A4 "Wind," and the A6/multitronic "Leonardo."

Audi of America will complement the kick-off of the new campaign with a special two-minute "Never Follow" positioning commercial airing exclusively on CNN and CNN Headline News.

Audi of America, headquartered in Auburn Hills, Mich., broke its all-time U.S. sales record in 2001 by selling a total of 83,283 cars through 260 Audi dealers. Its parent company, Audi AG, is headquartered in Ingolstadt, Germany, and markets a line of luxury cars built in plants in Ingolstadt and Neckarsulm, Germany, and in Györ, Hungary.

A Highlight of Significant Automotive Industry Achievements from Audi

1921 Audi introduces left-hand drive for better driver view and safety

Right-hand drive originated from the age of the horse and carriage, when the coachman sat on the right-hand side. In September 1921, Audi became the first German car manufacturer to present a production car with left-hand drive. By giving the driver a better view of oncoming traffic--and consequently making overtaking maneuvers safer--left-hand driving became established by the end of the 1920s.

1931 Audi starts mass production of front-wheel drive, several years before other brands

1980 Audi quattro® sports coupé introduced with legendary all-wheel drive

In March 1980, an all-wheel drive sports coupé caused a genuine sensation on the Audi stand at the Geneva Motor Show. The Audi quattro was the first high-performance vehicle with all-wheel drive. This drive concept had previously only been used on trucks and off-road vehicles. The permanent all-wheel drive system in the Audi quattro enjoyed worldwide success in motor sport and gradually found its way into the entire Audi model range. In 1983, Audi quattro won the USA Trans-Am Manufacturers and Drivers Championships.

1984 Audi introduces turbo diesel direct injection for passenger cars, culminating 13 years of development

1986 Audi 80 is the first production vehicle built with a fully galvanized body to help fight corrosion

1993 Audi unveils the Aluminum Space Frame for all-aluminum car frame production, reducing weight while increasing strength and creating a passenger safety cell

For nearly 10 years, Audi AG had been working together with the Aluminum Company of America on the development of a lightweight aluminum production car. The result was presented at the 1993 Frankfurt Motor Show: the aluminum study known as the Audi Space Frame (ASF). The body used new design principles: extruded aluminum sections connected together by die cast nodes to form a frame structure into which aluminum panels are integrated, where they have a load-bearing function. The Audi A8 is the first with an aluminum body built according to the ASF principle. Audi also was first to introduce - on the A8 - the effective four-link front suspension, combining maximum ride comfort with exceptional stability by isolating the steering from practically all drive influences.

1999 Audi becomes first to introduce five-valve-per-cylinder technology in a passenger car application - a technology previously used only in high-performance racing engines

2000 Audi A2 (Europe) becomes first volume-built aluminum car

2001 Audi introduces multitronicâ continuously variable automatic transmission

Arguably the most technologically advanced transmission in automotive history, multitronic operates more seamlessly when compared to even the very best conventional automatic transmissions. The multitronic transmission offers an infinite spread of "gear" ratios between its lowest and highest range (12.7:1 to 2.1:1). And, because it is an automatic, it "shifts" smoothly and seamlessly, with no perceptible pause, jerk, lurch or impact. Hence, multitronic offers the convenience of an automatic transmission with the driving acceleration of a five-speed manual, while delivering favorable fuel economy.