Audi has bought the twin-supercharged 1939 D-type Auto Union rescued from the USSR in the 1980s, meaning that it now owns three of the five remaining Auto Unions that can claim to be original. The car will appear at Goodwood Revival on September 14-16 as part of the landmark Silver Arrows celebration.
In their silver livery, the Auto Unions and their Mercedes-Benz rivals dominated the Grand Prix scene from 1934-39, but after WWII many of the original cars vanished in the former Soviet republics. One, Hans Stuck’s CID-type hillclimb car, was on display in the Riga Motor Museum, but it was only in the 1970s that rumours surfaced of two other cars. Over 10 years, US collector Paul Karassik tracked down the remains, negotiated purchase and drove the chassis out of Russia.
Renowned restorer Crosthwaite & Gardener, who also constructed the factory-sanctioned reproductions, built the elements up into two cars, one in 1938 singlesupercharger form, the other in later, twin-blower 1939 spec. Audi has owned the 1938 car for 12 years and also has the CID in its Ingolstadt museum, where the twinblower car will be displayed after Goodwood.