The Auto Union and Mercedes Benz motor sport teams, dominated motor racing
from 1934 until the outbreak of the second world war. Dubbed the Silver
Arrows, these cars and in particular the Auto Unions demonstrated technical
advances that were not seen again on racing cars for several decades.
Auto Union was the result of the amalgamation of four companies; Wanderer,DKW, Audi and Horch; hence the badge of four interlocking rings, one for each company. In 1969 Auto Union became Audi NSU as it merged with NSU and finally
became Audi in 1985.
The Ferdinand Porsche designed racing cars made their debut race appearence at the AVUS track in Berlin on 27th May 1934.
What happened to them?
During the war eighteen Auto Union team cars were hidden in a colliery
outside Zwickau, Saxony, where within the Horch factory the Auto Union race shop was based. In 1945 the Russians discovered these Silver Arrows
and claimed them as spoils of war. They were shipped back to Moscow where
they were distributed to scientific institutes and motor manufacturers for research. Most of the cars were probably scrapped but so far a number of cars have been brought out of Russia and fully restored in Britain.
They are now part of the Audi collection.