On Location: 4 Days at the Audi Forum Ingolstadt
by, 10-31-2011 at 12:03 PM (12035 Views)
Over the last two weeks we've logged as many trips to Germany and visited the Audi Forum Ingolstadt on four separate days. Beyond the gratuitous FourSquare mayorships we've netted at Audi's world HQ , the real thing we learned was just how much to see and experience there is going on in and around Audi's grand piazza on any given day.
Admittedly, we're Audi geeks and we're guessing you are too if you read this site on a regular basis. Given this, we couldn't just drop by such a target rich place as the Audi forum without taking a plethora of pics. And we did so... times four for each of our visits. This week we'll be publishing four separate galleries of our visits. Below I'll detail point by point of some of the very cool things I spotted, though you can find many, many more photos in our galleries. A link to the Day 1 Gallery can be found at the bottom.
We'll start our Day 1 tour with #001. One of our favorite things to do at the Audi forum is linger about in the underground parking garage. A watchful eye will find all sorts of significant cars, including this one. Yes, the R8 GT may not be all that rare a bird in areas like the Audi Forum but a closer look at this one revealed it was #001... the very first production R8 GT. Photographic proof of the car's shifter bearing #001 can be found in our gallery. For the record or the erstwhile R8 GT registry creator, #001 was a matte Suzuka Grey car.
Nothing to see here but a current-gen A8L W12 sporting optional 21-inch rotor wheels. We hear they'll be on the options list for North American S8 owners.
California Highway Patrol Edition R8 anyone? Well, not really, but you wouldn't be an oddball for thinking it. This black and white themed R8 featured white blade, white mirror caps and an interesting Audi Exclusive interior that included white gauge faces like those of the R8 GT (pics of these also available in the gallery).
Yes, that's a pink R8 Spyder you see there. Obviously an Audi Exclusive color, we'll do our best to chase down the name of the hue. While it may make you think Mary Kay Cosmetics or perhaps Barbie, this pinkish Spyder was a V10 with manual transmission and clearly built with a driving enthusiast in mind. More surprising, there were actually two identical R8s like this in the Audi Forum parking garage.
Eat your hearts out American Avant fans, as this grey S6 Avant is likely the current ultimate Audi wagon. We particularly loved it specced with rotor alloys, quilted alcantara seats and carbon ceramic brakes (pics of each viewable in gallery). There was also a second Red S6 in the garage as well that we also shot, but riding on winter wheels it was nowhere near as sexy as this example. Oddly, we spotted no other new 4.0T S-cars in the Audi Forum on any of our other visits.
The Audi Q7 V12 TDI is still in production despite moves to downsize the Audi lineup. Such cars are not terribly rare at the Audi Forum, though you don't usually see them painted Audi Exclusive colors like the R8 V10's Sepang Blue.
R8 fans and product planners take note. Remember those red-adorned seats of the UK-spec "Le Mans Edition" R8. We'd seen them before on an Audi Exclusive TTS show stand car but we've never seen them with the red segments swapped out for Grey. We're not sure if this is something that's available yet or some cool experiment by the crew at quattro GmbH but had to take a shot of them when we spotted them in an otherwise ordinary-looking Daytona Grey R8.
This shot's pretty self-explanatory. Remember that red A1 we posted photos of a few weeks ago, shot by folks from an Austrian Audi website and proof positive of an S1 variant of the A1 in the works? Well, we spotted the car parked over on the side of the garage where Audi board member cars sometimes reside. No surprise... it still has the S1 cluster.
Looking for some vintage Audi Sport gear? A new line of clothing, bags, etc. found at the Audi Collection Store above the delivery center may be of interest to you. Made to look fairly period correct, the clothing is the perfect way to show off your Audi rally era motorsport love.
Or if a more modern take on Audi Sport is your preference, you might keep your eyes open for this 1:43 scale R18 "test car". It actually looks more like the #1 Le Mans car than it does the test cars we witnessed in Sebring last spring but we're not complaining. There were just two on sale at the Audi Forum the day we arrived and we snapped up the last during our second visit. No doubt they'll sell fast but we expect all of the Audi Forums (Ingolstadt, Neckarsulm and Munich) will have them back in stock soon.
And speaking of Audi swag, B5 fans should take note of this. The Audi Museum Shop at the Museum Mobile was selling this 1:18 scale RS 4 Avant in Imola yellow. Apparently it's brand new and our travel mate on this day Josh Decker from QuattroWorld.com picked one up for himself. When we returned the second day, the shop was sold out. We expect they'll have more soon and at just 35 Euros they were very reasonably priced for a 1:18 scale car.
Speaking of yellow, check out this RS 3 we found parked over at the A50 building where there's almost always something special to see. We can best describe this as creamier than Imola Yellow... or just a bit more pale. We're not sure the color but we'll be dropping a note to contacts at Audi Exclusive to try to determine it. Interestingly, this car also has yellow-accented wheels, something we've not seen on any production RS 3 or in any order book. We're guessing this is an experimental one-off or evaluation build currently being driven by one of Audi's several enthusiast board members.
Surprisingly, the yellow car above wasn't the only RS 3 on hand to feature some experimental trim. Check out this red example with color-matched wheel centers and machined edges, which is quite different from other color-matched wheels we've seen on production RS 3s.
Nothing to see here but a facelifted S5 Sportback in Audi Exclusive Suzuka Grey.... just how we'd order one if we had the chance.
Last but not least is another yellow car, this time an R8. We're positive this car is painted in the traditional Imola Yellow so many Audi owners are familiar with, though it's definitely a rare color on the R8.
Check out more photos of each of these cars and much, much more from our first of four visits in the last two weeks (10/18/2011) in our photo gallery after the jump.