Lichte Lays Out the Future of Audi Design

Ever since  Marc Lichte took over design duties at Audi he’s been promising an end to the Russian doll school of design, wherein all Audis look the same except bigger or smaller. In an interview with French outlet L’argus, Lichte went over some of the finer points of his design vision.

The change, he says, will be evolutionary, not revolutionary. Lichte admits that he will be leaning heavily on the work of Walter de Silva, whose single frame grille will anchor new designs to Audi’s past.

“I will propose the third evolution with more sportiness,” Lichte told L’argus.

As has been previously noted, Audi is moving to a hexagonal grille for its sedans and an octagonal grille for its SUVs. That doesn’t mean that all sedans will look the same, though.

The new A8 testing
The new A8 testing

The A8, for example, will have a taller grille, richly highlighted with chrome to suggest pride and power. The A7, meanwhile, will have a thinner grille without any chrome. That, says Lichte, shows off the A7’s sporting nature and aggression.

Finally, the A6’s grille will be somewhere in the middle, with a thin chrome highlight and less aggressive angles

The new A6 testing
The new A6 testing

Out back, meanwhile, the A8 and A6 will get more chrome, while the A7 remains unornamented. Like the Q8, the A8 will also get a light bar, signifying their positions at the top of the Audi hierarchy.

The differences are all subtle enough that you could be forgiven for missing them, but they also quietly work in unity to suggest things about the rest of the car’s nature. Fortunately, regardless of how identical or not these Audis are, they are at least handsome.

Check out L’argus’ coverage to see the differences highlighted.