The history of the four rings
The Audi emblem of the four rings denotes one of Germany's oldest motor car manufacturers. It symbolises the union, accomplished in 1932, of four previously independent motor vehicle manufacturers: Audi, DKW, Horch and Wanderer. These companies are the foundation stones on which the present-day AUDI AG is built.
At the end of the 19th century, there were already a number of car manufacturers in Germany. One of them was August Horch & Cie., founded on 14 November 1899 in Cologne. August Horch was one of the pioneering figures of automotive engineering. Before setting up in business on his own, his professional experience had included three years as head of automobile production at Carl Benz in Mannheim. In 1904, August Horch relocated his company to Zwickau and transformed it into a stock company. However, as early as 1909, August Horch left the company he had founded. From then on, his achievements were forever to be linked with the name 'Audi'.
The company established by August Horch in Zwickau on 16 July 1909 could not take its founder's name for reasons of fair trade. A new name was found for the company by translating his name, which means "hark!", "listen!", into Latin. The second company set up by August Horch thus commenced trading under the name Audi Automobilwerke GmbH, Zwickau on 25 April 1910.
In 1885, the two mechanics Johann Baptist Winklhofer and Richard Adolf Jaenicke opened a repair business for bicycles in Chemnitz. Shortly afterwards they began to make bicycles of their own, since demand at that time was very high. These were soon being marketed under the brand name Wanderer, and in 1896 the company itself began to trade as Wanderer Fahrradwerke AG.
Wanderer built its first motorcycle in 1902. The idea of branching out into motor car production was finally put into practice in 1913. A small two-seater by the name of "Puppchen" heralded in Wanderer's...
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