Remember the little cousin sister that you used to play scrabble and donkey-kong. By the time you finished your med-school and has gone back home looking for ways to expand your life, career and lot other things – you suddenly meet her, and to your surprise she is all grown up and mature. She is no longer the little cousin sister that you knew. She now has an awesome bosom, a svelte figure that you want to hit on. The only problem is she still wants to play the scrabble and donkey-kong with you. But you know you want to play more than that – she knows that, you know that – but still she is your cousin sister. In the word of his holiness Captain May “Oh Cock” situation for sure!
This is the thing going on with Audi. I always believed in the Clarksonian utopia where Audi’s are meant for cement sales men. Just like Apple Macs a few years ago. Those plastic uni-boxes were meant for little school children who were only fascinated by things that only fluoresce. But when Apple decided to grow up she became the symbol of all sass and sex. Look at the new Macbook, its all style and substance baby – all style and substance!
Things started to change first when Audi designers thought the biggest problem with their line of cars are that they don’t shout the Audi lineage loudly. Like the BMWs extreme exhibitionism of wearing the Kidneys on the face, Audi designers came up with some-what subtler idea of the growing a beard. Just like the Amish to show we are all alike, but more European in execution – called the Bulgarian beard. I thought it was a practical joke – but they were dead serious. The boring Audis started to look like unwashed hobos.
Then they came up with this beast of a machine in sheep’s clothing called the Audi W12 A8. Yes the one Jason Statham spins around in Transporter series. Understated design but awesome for anyone who knew a little bit about car engines. It is like the perfect car for the bespectacled gentleman. When you are with your wife and kids put a Bach CD and try not to floor the pedal. After dropping the kids to school, and your wife to work, pretend you are late for the morning appointment. Floor the gas pedal drive like a maniac; exude the thrill from that awesome engine hanging in front of the front axle. And the best part is your will never look like a dorky over paid balding idiot going through mid-life crisis. Because first of all they won’t be able to see who is driving and second even if they manage to, will never believe their eyes that a boring car like that could achieve such high speed. Rather than noticing who is behind the wheels they would be rubbing the eyes and pinching themselves like Jimmy Carter staring in front of an UFO.
The next bomb was in the form of an SUV called the Q7. Anyone who thought Q7s were ugly were run over and killed secretly by a gang of mighty Q7s. People became scared of talking out loud: how ugly the Q7 was. But then there is another reason. Porsche came up with the idea of “frogs and cars” line. The new Cayenne was so much uglier than the Q7 that people started actually believing Q7 is a good looking vehicle. It’s like the girl thing, which I noticed during my college days. Below average looking girls pick up ugly girls as their best mates because they know human brain relies heavily on comparisons for things like beauty and sexual attractiveness. They stand a better chance of getting picked up than say for example a bunch of equally hot looking women, which confuses most men with too much choice! Audi somehow managed to woo a lot of customers with the Q7.
The absolute best part of the Audi re-invention is the Audi R8. Audi tried hands with the whole 2 seater sports car thing by releasing the Audi TT. But then except for the men in pink and the ladies who needed a chic car to run to the hair dressers, for most petrol heads it became a no go zone. Audi then realized suddenly, why not make Audi TT sportier. They put a light weight aluminum body on to a stiff chassis, a sporty suspension and a responsive 4.2L V8 mated via a six speed transmission. The striking new head lamps with pointless but attractive LED lights, a two tone body and its butt filled with gills made the R8 look like a love child between the TT and a Gallardo. But boy oh boy, despite its odd ball styling the R8 turned out to be the best thing to happen to Audi enthusiast after the Quattro 4 wheel drive systems in the 1980s.
You know what all these missteps helped Audi become a cool car company. Surprising, but that is the fact. Unlike the “Kidney on my face” exhibitionist bunch called the BMW owners, or “I am too old to learn any other car company name other than Benz” crowd, or “I have a wife, but I am gay and I drive a Lexus hybrid just to show the world how much I care about my homosexuality”, the Audi owners are surprisingly neutral. They are just a bunch of normal people who want a good performing, reliable, fuel efficient, precise handling, comfortable and practical cars. They don’t want to talk about the Quattro all wheel drive system that allows superior traction after a mild rain unlike the M3 owners who will never stop talking about the awesome M – sports package they have. They never boast about the fuel efficient power train on the hybrid SUV which causes more environmental damage in the long run than any other aluminum block diesel or petrol power trains like a Lexus owner. And you will never find an Audi in front of a hip-replacement clinic or in a compromising failure to start position with your father, in the morning due to an electrical fault after sitting in the mild drizzle half an hour back like the Mercedes freaking Benz.
Yes that’s the reason why the marketing folks of Audi of America have come up with the “brilliant idea” of advertising those characteristics that make an Audi an Audi. I don’t know if Audi will have the same future as the BMWs ending up being the cock vehicle or the Lexus status of trash talking plush mobiles.But now I have one more reason to loving hate Audi.
Verdict :The quiet girl in the room turns out to be a chatter box. But at least she is funny and sexy – for now at least!
Audi has started airing a series of viral videos part of a recurring theme based on the movie “Meet the Fockers”. In the Audilacious world its called “Meet the Beckers”. Its a rather enjoyable comical take on cars and their owners, highlighting the cultural stereotypes. Enjoy the first episode of “Meet the Beckers”
Audi has indirectly confirmed with their next episode of “Meet the Beckers” that Lexus owners do make love to cold meat and and for the “ultimate driving machine” owners Laguna Seca is a “killer beach in Florida where every body is a hard body”! Watch the second innings of “Meet the Beckers”