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This fake vintage Audi ad slathers on the ’90s nostalgia
As of 2019, the Audi RS2 is legal for import to the U.S. after 25 years, and to honor the occasion, Audi released a parody ad recycling period footage. Using actual B-roll from the ’90s, the automaker’s tongue-in-cheek “vintage” ad caters to modern day nostalgia, billing itself as an unreleased promo hinted at in an Audi short film from earlier this summer, titled An Avant Story.
That longer video follows the protagonist’s growth from a toddler in the back seat of his parents’ Audi Fox station wagon to a middle-aged father with his own new RS6 Avant (a touch of gray in his beard which, we guess, is unrelated). The film shows him playing with toy Audi wagons as he grows, his passion for the brand demonstrated by his yearning for that first ’94 RS2 Avant provoked by a certain commercial he supposedly watches as a teen…
As intended, the video plucks at our heartstrings and fills us with the warm fuzzies for Audi’s ultimate ’90s wagon. The original film shows us just a single shot from the supposed RS2 Avant commercial, with the image of the blue sport wagon, the text “Audi RS2 Avant ’94,” and the parenthetical disclaimer “Not Available in U.S.A.”
As of 2019, Audi has now doubled up on the Avant festivities. Ironically introduced with “Here now is the full RS2 product film which you have definitely never seen” (supposedly an awkward translation from the German), the fake commercial is a tribute to the RS2’s Porsche-developed roots. Porsche didn’t just collaborate with Audi, either. Just a few years earlier, Porsche finished chassis and installed AMG engines in Mercedes-Benz’s 500E.
After introducing “the world’s first truly high performance luxury estate car,” the RS2 ad lists the Avant’s “high-end luxury” features, including cruise control, power windows, air conditioning, air bags, and state-of-the-art hi-fi stereo… “with cassette player standard.” The cassette player isn’t the only endearing ’90s feature; the commercial is filled with the sort of video glitches and artifacts you once saw on a VHS—that is, if you’re old enough to remember one.
We’re then taken to Ingolstadt, site of Audi’s headquarters, to get an opinion about the RS2 Avant from “a totally random man on the street”…who just happens to be named Hans Stuck. That’s a bit of an inside joke. Stuck, of course, is the champion rally driver who helped form the all-wheel-drive mythos of Audi quattro. At the very end, the video switches from the look of degraded VHS to a full high-definition image of the RS2 Avant, with the voiceover: “The 1994 RS2 Avant, now available for legal import in the U.S.” and the tagline “Celebrating 25 years of RS.”
The new Easter-egg RS2 video is a humorous tribute to a very significant Audi—and a significant Audi driver as well. Which would you spring for: the original RS2 Avant or its 2020 kin RS6? Let us know below.