American Marketer


Audi’s head of design unveils first concept car

October 15, 2014

Audi Q3 Audi Q3


German automaker Audi is shifting design directions as Mark Lichte, the brand’s new design director, demonstrates his first concept car at the Los Angeles Auto Show Nov. 19.

While the design will maintain the brand’s core values and will be identifiable as an Audi vehicle, the brand is framing the concept as a dramatic leap into the future. As the unveil draws near, the brand will likely release plenty of social content to pique the interest of auto enthusiasts.

New direction

Mr. Lichten began his career at Volkswagen in 1996 and worked as an exterior designer until becoming the head of the exterior design studio.

Since Audi is under the Volkswagen umbrella, Mr. Lichte likely became highly familiar with the design aesthetics of the brand. Consequently, his appointment as head of Audi design was a straightforward decision that likely minimized transition obstacles.

According to the brand’s statement, his first concept car will be more of a mission statement of his values than a plausible vehicle for production.

Audi design director

Audi promotional image

The brand describes the approach as “a new and highly emotional design idiom” that “communicates the technical competence and uncompromising product quality of the Audi brand.”

Auto brands often frame industry shows in bold terms.

Italian automaker Lamborghini is aiming to “significantly” reduce CO2 emissions going forward and has unveiled a concept vehicle to that end at the Paris Motor Show.

The Lamborghini Asterion LPI 910-4 looks to maintain the brand’s quintessential power while staying mindful of environmental trends (see story).