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Does Volkswagen Own Audi?

In the automotive industry, relationships are complicated. Various brands are buying, selling, and everything in between. Volkswagen and Audi are both well-known German car companies. But does Volkswagen Automotive Group own Audi?

Let’s check out a little history of these two German brands. What is the relationship between the two? Here’s a brief background of both Volkswagen and Audi and their history together.

Is Volkswagen Automotive Group a German car company?

Yes, Volkswagen Automotive Group began in 1937 on German soil. According to Brittanica, the German government founded Volkswagen in order to create a German brand that “mass-produce a low-priced ‘people’s car.” In fact, the Volkswagen Wikipedia page confirms that the name actually means “people’s car.”

The birth of Volkswagen meant bringing good, quality cars to the people of Germany and the rest of Europe. The first design for such a car was done by Ferdinand Porsche, an automotive engineer that the German Labor Front (the Volkswagen Automotive Group precursor) hired in 1934.

2021 Volkswagen Atlas parked in the wilderness
2021 Volkswagen Atlas | Volkswagen

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Before this mass production commenced, however, World War II broke out in 1939. By the end of the war, the factory was in shambles. It had been a military target due to the fact that it was repurposed in order to produce equipment and vehicles for the military. However, when the war was over British supervisors oversaw the rebuild of the original Volkswagen factory.

After that, the first mass-produced Volkswagens were introduced in 1946. It was not long before over half the drivers in Germany drove a Volkswagen. While the U.S. wasn’t initially sold on the German brand, sales picked up and we got Volkswagen of America in 1955. We soon saw the iconic rear-engine Volkswagen Beetle rise to the top of imported sales.

Does Volkswagen own Audi?

According to Consumer Reports, Volkswagen does in fact own Audi. On Consumer Reports’ list of which companies own what car brands, we see that Audi is a part of the Volkswagen Auto Group. But when did that happen?

an Audi e-tron at speed on a mountain road
Audi Q4 Sportback e-tron concept | Audi

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“Audi is one of the world’s leading premium brands and has been a member of the Volkswagen Group since 1965.”

Volkswagen Auto Group

According to Audi’s page on the Volkswagen Automotive Group website, it acquired Audi back in 1965. Audi has long been a producer of premium vehicles with performance at its core. Audi continues as an asset to the Volkswagen Auto Group. The luxury brand keeps releasing new electrified models––the fully-electric Audi E-Tron SUV, for example.

Where are the headquarters?

The global headquarters for Volkswagen Auto Group are in Wolfsburg, Germany. This German car company doesn’t just oversee Audi and Volkswagen. Volkswagen Auto Group, located in Wolfsburg, is a global conglomerate that owns 12 brands worldwide.

The brands under Volkswagen’s corporate umbrella include some pretty epic names. MotorTrend reports ownership of Lamborghini, Porsche, Bentley, and Bugatti are all part of the global fleet. Ducati is also part of the group. There’s also a Volkswagen commercial brand.

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Then there are some brands we aren’t super familiar with here in the states. Namely, Scania, Skoda, SEAT, and Man, a commercial truck brand. Volkswagen Auto Group owns the German car companies Audi and Volkswagen, but it owns several others too. The auto group has shown resilience and willingness to learn as it goes to produce some of the finest cars on earth.