How AUDI Wanted To Take On The Luxury Segment in the 80’s


Published on July 24th, 2018 | by Daniel Sherman Fernandez


How AUDI Wanted To Take On The Luxury Segment in the 80’s

Until the end of the 1980’s, Mercedes led the luxury sedan car segment by a far margin and was followed by BMW. Audi was somewhat missing from the picture and so the management decided that they needed to take on Benz and BMW as demand for luxury sedans went upwards in North America and Europe.

Audi management released this V8 sedan which was all about being upwardly mobile during the ‘80s, and no car it produced better embodied its ambition. Although clearly based on the Audi 100/200, it was powered by an all new 3.6-litre V8 and underpinned by a capable quattro drivetrain. The interior was very roomy and well-appointed, featuring luxury features from Audi like leather upholstery, heated seats, power windows and locks, a power sunroof, and air conditioning. ABS brakes and a driver’s side airbag were extra safety features for the European and North American buyers only.

Acceleration was not great with the 1989 V8, due to its full-size dimensions. Though it was satisfyingly fast enough on the highway, it only did 0-100km/h run in 9.7 seconds. This 247bhp V8 was the catalyst that launched Audi into the luxury car market, and the company’s early image was as a premium alternative to established international competitors like Benz and BMW.

A small handful arrived in Malaysia and they seemed to have disappeared from our roads today.  If you can find one with all features and body intact with the right price it might be worth restoration.

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