While Individuals could buy new autos manufactured by Audi ancestors DKW and NSU throughout the 1950s and 1960s (number of did so), the Audi story as we know it listed here actually commenced in 1969, when the 1970 100LS went on sale in the United States. The 100LS remained on sale via 1976 and acquired a smaller-but-devoted American subsequent, and I attempt my finest to uncover discarded illustrations in the course of my junkyard travels. This has been a tricky endeavor, with just a lone ’76 sedan appearing in advance of my digicam all through the past 10 years or so. Final week, although, I discovered this exceptionally uncommon initially-design-calendar year 100LS in a property northeast of Denver.
Note that the corporation identify was “Audi NSU Vehicle Union” at the time of this car’s manufacture which is what Volkswagen’s bosses named it just after the 1969 acquisition of NSU, and the identify trapped until finally the enterprise turned just Audi AG in the 1980s. Date of manufacture was April of 1970, close to the time when the Baader-Meinhoff Team was stirring up issues in West Germany.
Bob Hagestad ran a Porsche/Audi dealership on Colfax Avenue in Denver, turned very well-acknowledged as a Colorado 924 racer, and went on to promote Volkswagens in Texas.
This motor vehicle seems to have been well-cared-for for the duration of its very first pair of many years, at which stage it finished up paying lots of yrs sitting outdoors in the severe Substantial Plains local weather. A lot of the paint has been burned off its higher surfaces and there is certainly rust-by from several decades of winter season snow buildup.
The after-high-class interior has been irradiated into a dust-billowing crispiness.
As so frequently occurs with cars saved outdoor for long durations below, rodents produced their nests in the passenger and engine compartments. You need to have to be mindful with mouse-poop-stuffed autos like this in Colorado boneyards, since hantavirus is a genuinely lethal danger in this article. I have witnessed worse rodent-poop vehicles than this, however — a lot even worse.
The 1.8-liter motor all the way at the entrance of the motor compartment produced 115 horsepower when new, which was rather superior power for 1970.
The four-on-the-flooring manual was however point out-of-the-artwork in 1970, with most Detroit 3-pedal automobiles nonetheless managing 3-on-the-trees. The last new 4-velocity handbook motor vehicle accessible in the United States strike the showrooms when this Audi was a quarter-century aged, so this kind of transmission remained suitable for quite a although. The 100LS got an optional automatic transmission commencing in 1971, and it value $200 additional (about $1,310 in 2021 bucks).
The change diagram built into a common VDO gauge housing is a wonderful contact.
These VDO/Kienzle clocks went into thousands and thousands of European cars and trucks more than the a long time.
This Emden AM/FM radio was an $85 selection. Which is about $555 in existing-working day bucks, but absolutely required if you needed to listen to the hits of 1970 with the essential fidelity.
So how significantly was the whole automobile? MSRP on the two-doorway 100LS sedan arrived to $3,695, or about $25,450 in 2021 dollars. In the meantime, the more substantial and flashier 1970 Buick Gran Sport hardtop coupe cost just $3,283, and that provided a 455-cubic-inch (7.5-liter) V8 rated at 350 horsepower. An American motor vehicle shopper had to be one thing of a devoted Europhile to pick a new Audi in 1970 (in that circumstance, although, the $2,982 BMW 2002 would have been challenging to resist).
I hope some Colorado 100LS restorers extract some usable components off this auto right before it faces the cold steel jaws of the crusher!
Like possessing a Rolls-Royce Silver Shadow, Mercedes-Benz 280SE, and a Cadillac Eldorado all at the identical time!