Audi designer Andreas Koglin sheds some light on the creative process that takes ideas and turns them into real life automotive magic.
9 April, 2020
With a sweep of a designer’s pencil, the distinctive coupe-like roofline of the new Audi A7 Sportback is rendered in black and white. Another few flourishes and the pronounced quattro ‘blisters’ that accentuate the wheel arches emerge from the white page, and with a few more sweeps, some almost imperceptible shading and minimalist detail added here and there, the svelte Audi A7 Sportback is unmistakably recreated on page in just a matter of minutes.
It looks so easy, and for Audi designer, Andreas Koglin, who worked on the exterior design of Audi A7 Sportback, it should be. His efforts were instrumental in taking the iconic design of the first Audi A7 Sportback and reinterpreting and building on that design to make the second generation model an award-winner in its own right.
This was a high pressure brief even for a designer as talented as Koglin. Remaining true to the original design while giving the new model a presence and personality of its own, was no small feat, no matter how easy he may make it look now.
“We love our history,” says Koglin of the need to reflect the evolution of Audi design from previous models and pay homage in this new design.
“Audi has a special balance because of quattro and we want to show quattro in the actual design of the car.”
Again, a concept easier said than done – imbuing the car with the spirit of the brand’s four-wheel drive system that literally revolutionised world motorsport 40 years ago. But this dynamism too, has been achieved so that the A7 looks ready to pounce, even when stationary.
While the A7 Sportback has always been considered an elegant grand tourer, there is no escaping that intrinsic sporting character, and this is achieved says Koglin through accentuating the wheels with the enlarged wheels arches. This no only adds to the vehicle’s strong presence on the road and accommodates the massive rims, but guides the eye down to the low shoulder line that also brings the centre of gravity down and further adds to the ‘planted’ and strong stance on the road.
“This was a dream come true for a designer,” says Koglin, whose original sketches were rendered years before the car became a reality. Adopting the new design language developed by head of Audi design, Marc Lichte, and bringing in all of the elements of history and brand image into a package that is not just cohesive and functional – but beautiful.
A challenge, certainly, but one that was met and executed perfectly. And like so many iconic designs, it seems simple at first glance. But it is that apparent simplicity that is captivating and what makes the Audi A7 one of the most beautiful, four-door coupes in the world – not to mention the World Luxury Car of the Year. An elegant grand tourer, that in every way, lives up to its grand design.
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