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Audi Embraces New Media - Web Exclusive

Jun 2, 2009
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The evolving digital world has changed the way the auto industry views new media and mobile technology. Audi now vies for the attention of iPhone users with the likes of EA Sports and other well-established game developers. Leading by example, Audi became the first auto manufacturer to launch a video podcast channel on iTunes back in 2/07, along with technology tutorials that were made specifically for the iPod.

With over 2 million video podcast downloads, and the launch of the technology iPod tutorials, Audi has been a pioneer in leveraging the iPod and iTunes, allowing users to learn about their car's technology from the driver's seat - creating a hands-on and interactive experience.

Audi also went on to launch the groundbreaking Audi A4 Driving Challenge application, placing it as the first automotive brand to launch an application for the iPhone. The results were exceptional. The game received Top 10 "Game of the Year" honors from Apple and earned millions of blog and social media mentions, as well as over 3.35 million downloads to date.

As other luxury brands began to enter this new media market, Audi introduced another auto industry first in 3/09 when it released its Le Mans documentary film, Truth in 24, exclusively on iTunes.

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In support of the film, Audi developed and launched a new application, Truth in 24. The game puts the excitement of Le Mans racing into the hands of users with a realistic Le Mans course, opposing racecars and strategic pit stop decisions in a 3D environment. The Truth in 24 application exceeded 467000 downloads in one month and is the first application to be released exclusively with a movie within the iTunes store.

At Audi, progress goes beyond the newest vehicle models to the full customer experience. That includes embracing new technology and harnessing that technology for the Audi community. In total, more than 6.5 million units of content have been distributed through new media to current and future Audi customers - demonstrating that progress has many forms and many applications.

More recently, Audi announced it has joined forces with Xbox 360 for the highly anticipated debut of Forza Motorsport 3 - The 2010 Audi R8 5.2 FSI quattro V10 will be featured prominently on the cover of the game and within the game itself.Forza Motorsport has been at the pinnacle of racing games since its arrival in 2005. When Forza Motorsport 3 hits the market in October, it will set a new standard for the modern racing game.

Featuring the Audi R8 5.2 FSI quattro prominently on the cover, the creators worked closely with Audi engineers to model the R8 V10 to an intricate degree. Important, but often overlooked aspects of motorsport, details such as gear ratios, tire deformation, and track telemetry are integrated in the game, making it the most exhilarating experience you can have off the track.

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Best of all, Forza Motorsport 3 allows participants to experience the thrill of taking the checkered flag from the starting line, with the help of driving assists, training modes and a forgiving rewind feature that ensures a great experience for car fans of all ages and skill levels.

"What we love about the R8 is that the car stands for much of what makes Forza Motorsport 3 the ultimate racing game - powerful but refined, sophisticated yet inviting, the perfect blend of design and performance," said Dan Greenawalt, Game Director, Turn 10. "It's that blend of design and performance that makes Audi the ideal partner for my team. It mirrors the way we approach the development of Forza."

What made this partnership so attractive to Audi was the passion that developers of Forza Motorsport 3 have for highly-tuned automobiles. "If you spend a few minutes with the teams at Xbox and Turn 10 you know these are car buffs who appreciate exceptional cars," said Scott Keogh, Chief Marketing Officer, Audi of America. "Forza Motorsport 3 exudes authenticity. Audi puts a premium on engineering excellence. The two philosophies mesh perfectly."

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The Xbox-Audi partnership extends beyond the development of the game itself to include a series of marketing and promotional activities leading up to and following the launch of the R8 V10 and the game. Among these activities, the R8 V10 will be a focal point at the unveiling of Forza Motorsport 3 in the Xbox 360 press briefing and throughout the E3 Expo. Through June 14, consumers can go to www.forzamotorsport.net/contest/ where they can enter a competition to design a skin for the R8 V10 that will become a custom downloadable car for everybody who pre-orders the game. Judges will select five potential finalists, who will each receive an Xbox 360 wireless racing wheel.

And finally, American directors Keith Cossrow and Bennett Viseltear won the first-place award at the MIFF Film Festival in Milan for the movie "Truth in 24" in the "Company Film" category. The team accompanied Audi Sport Team Joest on the way to its third triumph at the 2008 24 Hours of Le Mans with the Audi R10 TDI. The 96-minute documentary was aired by US sports channel ESPN in March and celebrated its European premiere in Milan. It's currently available for download at iTunes.

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