2015 Audi S3 sedan

Audi Design Inconsistencies

Audi’s design language has been criticized as being too conservative, but it also has been impeccably consistent. No more. Examples? For the S models, Audi recently launched a separate line surrounding the front air intakes, which have a curious resemblance to glasses. This element has been launched progressively, but the S8 still needs to catch up. But will it? While the regular S3 hatch has the flourish, it has been abandoned on the new S3 sedan. What will set the S models apart in the future?

Another example is the specific front air intake design for Audi’s RS models, which just launched with the RS6 Avant and the RS7 Sportback. (You can admire the cars in press photos, since they won’t be in dealerships until sometime down the road.) But before anyone has associated this attractive element with the RS models, Audi has gone and plastered it onto the base A3 sedannot the S, not the RS. If there is a strategy behind this, I don’t get it.

  • First Drive: 2015 Volkswagen GTI
  • Instrumented Test: 2013 Audi S8
  • Instrumented Test: 2013 Tesla Model S

On a lighter note, is former CEO Franz-Josef Paefgen back at Audi? This question was prompted by the appearance of a dark green RS7 Sportback in the parking area in front of the company’s Ingolstadt headquarters. Paefgen, who later headed Bentley, had a weak spot for dark green cars with beige interiors. But it turned out that this dark green car actually belongs to Rupert Stadler. Nice choice. Marketing chief Luca de Meo prefers a matte Daytona gray RS6 Avant.

By Jens Meiners