The car year 1932 – Four companies – a successful merger The year 1932 brought the forerunner of the company Audi AG which today, along with BMW and Mercedes, is one of the most important manufacturers of luxury cars in the German automotive industry. On 29. June 1932, as a result of a merger of four companies, the Zwickau-based Audi Automobilwerke GmbH and the August Horch& Cie. Engine plants, as well as the motorcycle manufacturer Zschopauer Motorenwerke J. S. Rasmussen and Wanderer Werke AG, the Auto Union AG group is founded in Chemnitz, Germany. Four intertwined rings symbolically served as the company logo, representing the four partner companies. The memorable logo was later adopted by Audi AG. Still adorns the cars produced by Audi today. Auto Union AG quickly became Germany's most successful automobile manufacturer behind Adam Opel AG, although the Audi brand had the lowest sales figures within the group compared to its sister brands DKW, Horch and Wanderer. In addition to steadily growing sales in the passenger car market in the 1930s, Auto Union AG enjoyed great success in racing in particular, thanks in large part to the designs and development of its racing cars by Ferdinand Porsche's design office.
In the late 1950s, Daimler-Benz took over the majority of the share capital of Auto Union AG, whose Audi brand had been increasingly displaced by its sister companies since the Second World War, first and foremost DKW, until Audi finally disappeared from the market altogether. When the Volkswagen Group became the new owner of Auto Union AG in 1965, it was decided to revive the Audi brand. These efforts resulted in the legendary Audi F 103 in the same year. In the mid-1980s, Auto Union was renamed Audi, and since then the prestige brand with its headquarters in Ingolstadt has advanced to become one of Germany's most successful companies. Nine production plants in eight different countries manufacture more than 1.4 million Audi vehicles annually. In 2012, the company, which is still owned by Volkswagen, recorded Audi AG a turnover of 48.771 billion euros.
With the DKW 2, a small car first introduced in 1932 that enjoyed enormous commercial success, DKW, as part of Auto Union AG, overtook its rivals Adlerwerke and Mercedes-Benz in the early 1930s to position itself as Germany's second most successful carmaker behind Opel, although Adler, with its Trumpf and Primus models, and Mercedes-Benz, with its W 15 model from 1932, also had substantial sales figures.
The BMW 3/20, presented to the public for the first time in 1932, was the first automobile to be developed entirely by the traditional Bavarian company itself. The small car, which was produced until 1934, replaced its predecessor, the BMW Dixi, which was based on the design of the Austin 7.
In September 1932, Daimler also attracted attention with the presentation of the Daimler 15 saloon. Like many other luxury car manufacturers, the group had to react to the changed market situation caused by the world economic crisis and launched the Daimler 15, a car that was very affordable compared to other models produced by the company.
In France, the mid-size luxury car caused Renault Primastella caused a great stir, in Italy Fiat launched the 508 Balilla, of which 113,000 were built in Fiat factories in Italy, France, Germany and Poland by 1937.
In the United States, the innovative and modern designs of cars such as the Hudson Motor Company's Terraplane and the William Bushnell Stout-designed Stout Scarab, first introduced in 1932, attracted attention.
In Great Britain, elegant models such as the MG K-type, the MG J-type, the Vauxhall Cadet and the Lagonda 16/80 luxury car were launched in this year.