An acknowledged leader in automotive lighting, a new exhibition at the Audi Museum in Ingolstadt  shines a light on the milestones to date in the brand’s leading-edge lighting development.

22 November, 2022

Even from a great distance, an Audi’s lighting signature identifies it. Those with a keen eye and a knowledge of the brand may even be able to identify the exact model Audi from a distance, although they would have to stay up-to-date to keep track of the tremendous advances that Audi has made and continues to make in automotive lighting technology.

A new exhibition at the Audi Museum in Ingolstadt entitled ‘The Speed of Light’ now lays out that history for visitors to see, featuring examples of milestone models showcasing lighting technology developed by the brand that has continually redefined the sector. From the earliest days when automotive light was literally generated using fire – or at least candles – right through the advent of carbide headlights to electric power and the ‘Bosch light’ of 1913 which set the course for the ‘modern’ headlight. It is a fascinating journey around a technology that continues to be so much a part of the modern vehicle.

From halogen to xenon, LED, digital Matrix LED, OLED rear lights and laser light – few automotive technologies have had such a simultaneous impact on safety, utility and style as a vehicle’s lights and no manufacturer has influenced that development quite the way Audi has.

The exhibition includes such vehicles as an Audi Type C from 1919 with acetylene headlights which is the oldest vehicle featured, as well as a 1936 Horch 850 Cabriolet with Bilux high beams and a 1954 DKW F 91 with yellow fog lights. On the other end of the scale, the 2014 Audi R8 LMX was the first Audi to feature laser high beams which now feature on numerous models. The Audi AI:CON concept car is featured as the ‘next step’ in automotive lighting with its fully digitised front and rear display surfaces not only serving to light the way but also to convey information to other road users through changing light patterns.

A fascinating look at how far we have come and how fast it has happened, the Speed of Light exhibition is open now and runs through until June 2023 at the Museum Mobile in Ingolstadt. For those unable to get there in person, it can also be enjoyed remotely on the Audi Tradition app.