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February 20, 2007

The Audi A1 Looking for a New Brand Name

audi_a1.jpgThe recent announcement that the Audi A1 is going to get a revamp and a new name of course got me thinking.

This car is positioned to compete against the Mini Cooper and, interestingly, the Alfa Romeo Junior, a retro-return of the famous 1960’s brand name by the same company.

Preliminary renderings show us a pretty macho looking vehicle built on the VW Polo platform, and it makes me wonder in what direction Audi’s new team will go. Should they try to find a retro name to compete with these entrenched retro small car product names? Or should they offer a more modern alternative?

mini-cooper-front.jpgI’m thinking that this car’s design is modern enough so that digging out a 1960’s brand name or developing one that sounds like it came from decades ago is not the direction Audi will go. Instead, I would guess they will choose either another alphanumeric name or else a name that sets the car apart from the nostalgia lovers.

I do think that the car should get a real brand name, however, seeing as its major competitors which also include DaimlerChrysler’s Smart car and a mystery small car challenger by sister company VW, the king of small car brand names - think Golf, Rabbit, and Beetle, which is probably also getting a makeover.

If Audi is serious about capturing market share in this very competitive segment, I recommend that they don't use an alphanumeric nomenclature but develop a brand name that could become potentially iconic over time.

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Posted by William Lozito at February 20, 2007 9:36 AM
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1 Comment

I'm no branding expert, but one of these retro models is just begging to be called the Mocker. As in "Are you a Mod or a Rocker?"

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