Audi 100

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Audi 100

The Audi 100 was a mid-sized automobile from Audi that was made between 1968 and 1994. The C3 model of the 100 (sold in the United States as the Audi 5000 until 1988) was controversial in that it was targeted by CBS News as being unsafe, but it was eventually cleared by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Contents

C1, 1968–1976

The Audi 100 was shown to the press on November 26, 1968. Originally denoting a power output of 100 PS, the Audi 100 was the range's largest car after the Audi brand was revived by Volkswagen in the 1960s. The C1 platform spawned several variants: the Audi 100 two- and four-door sedans, and the Audi 100 Coupé S, available as a fastback model.

C2, 1976–1984

The C2 Audi 100 was launched in 1976, with crisper styling and an unusual five-cylinder engine, the first in the world. The Coupé was discontinued, but a five-door hatchback model, the 100 Avant, was launched as part of this generation. Two- and four-door models continued. The 100 was sold as the Audi 5000 in the United States. In 1980, the Audi 200, a plusher variant that included a turbocharged model, was introduced. The Audi 100 was succeeded by the C3 platform model in 1983, but the 200 continued for one more year.

C3, 1983–1991

Scooping Car of the Year in Europe, the 1983 Audi 100 had a remarkable aerodynamic look, achieving a drag co-efficient of 0,30 for its base model. This became a great marketing gimmick for Audi in the 1980s, and marked the change from the boxy shapes of the 1970s to the new decade's rounded forms. The styling has been cited as a precursor for the look of the Ford Taurus and other notable cars of the 1980s.

The two-door models were no longer available, and the Audi 100 Avant became more of a station wagon. The 200 continued as the upmarket variant.

In the United States, the 5000 name was abandoned after Audi received very negative publicity over its "unintended acceleration" incident, a problem exascerbated by fabricated news reports from CBS News's 60 Minutes program. The National Highway and Transport Safety Administration (NHTSA) concluded that the majority of unintended acceleration cases, including all the ones that prompted the 60 Minutes report, were caused by driver error. CBS issued a partial retraction.

However, with the damage done, the 5000 became the 100 for the 1989 model year. Audi sales would not return to the same level for 15 years.

Eventually, the NHTSA found that the Audi 5000 C3 had the lowest fatality rate of any car in the United States during its production run. Many Audi owners, who traded in their cars in the wake of the 60 Minutes fiasco, were stung twice: they lost money on trade-ins as the brand plummeted to an all-time low, and bought a less safe car.

At the end of the decade, the Audi V8 was announced. This was essentially a 200 Quattro with two four-cylinder Volkswagen Golf GTI engines put together.

The 5000 S/Turbo was on Car and Driver's Ten Best list for 1984 and 1985. The CS Turbo Quattro was on that list for 1986 through 1988.

C4, 1991–1997

A heavily revised C3, the C4, was introduced in 1991. The 200 models were renamed Audi S4, and the C3-platform V8 continued to be sold as a separate line. The 100 models were renamed Audi A6 and the S4s were renamed Audi S6 in 1995. The V8 was eventually replaced by the first Audi A8 in 1994.

Type numbers

In addition to the C platform codes, Audi had Type numbers for its models:

  • C1: Audi 100 (1969–1976)
  • C2 Type 43: Audi 100 (1976–1982); Audi 200 (1979–1982)
  • C3 Type 44: Audi 100 (1983–1991); Audi 200 (1983–1991)
  • C4 Type 4A: Audi 100 (1991–1994); Audi S4 (1992–1994); Audi A6 (1995–1997); Audi S6 (1995–1997)

External links

de:Audi 100 sv:Audi 100


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