Kaipola, Finland. 1986. – 20ºC. Harald Demuth climbs to a platform 61 metres above the ground, looks around, and finds a huge forest covered in snow and ice, and a platform with an angle of 37.5°, a slope of 80%. As you would recognize it in an interview years later (see interview in German) it was impossible to contain the nerves. After this preview, Harald would have to face climb this trampoline ski jump in a Audi 100 CS quattro red with 136 HP of power. That feat would be recorded in video and starred in one of the ads of the most famous cars in history. A feat not without its risks, or technical complexities, and is that what supposed to be a challenge even for the best off-road time. what Was trick? How to be prepared for that feat?
the complexity of The challenge was greater than you can imagine. Harald not only had to climb up that platform once. In total would have to repeat the maneuver at up to 13 times. Those images had to be perfectly portrayed, would be used by cameras in the car, a camera installed on the top, at the base, and also would do some shots from a helicopter. The car, prior to performing the test, had to lift up with a crane up to the platform on which the break occurs of the skiers.
Harald had a mechanic from his old team rallies, that after proposing a lot of ideas designed three systems of different security. On the one hand, the Audi 100 was connected to a safety line, to prevent descolgase if the situation get ugly, and to lower the vehicle and repeat each scene. It also had a system, similar to a huge fork, that is clavaría on the snow and the ice to operate the hand brake. Finally, there was a system to launch the car and that this won speed to cope with the track jump. But this last was not necessary. And the Audi 100 would raise the track by its own means.
The recording equipment had to face during four days at temperatures of up to -20 ° C, and a maximum of between three and four hours of light. The test had to be carefully planned, the Audi 100 CS quattro red employee, obviously, would be with tires with nails to adhere to the ice surface. And is that, beyond the immense slope that would save, that track of Pitkavuori was still an ice rink.
Finally, that proclamation was to become one of the most well-known, not only Audi, but the entire history of the automobile. Even would receive a prize at Cannes.
In 2005, 19 years after the legendary ad, and on the occasion of the 25th anniversary of the birth of the Audi Ur-Quattro, and the famous drive system that would achieve legend in racing and street, Audi is proposed to repeat the feat. In that case, he had chosen an Audi A6 4.2 quattro colour Atlas Grey.
Harald would recognize that at that time it was one of the pilots proposed to the challenge, but unfortunately a wrist fracture in a minor accident at the exit of the hotel in Finland would do that was ruled out at the last moment. Finally, Uwe Bleck managed to climb back into an Audi A6 on a track Pitkavuori that had to be revamped for the occasion, after 11 years of inactivity. On that occasion, Audi had a team of 40 people, and the work of preparation had to be started three weeks before. A time that does not seem exaggerated if we bear in mind that even some of the panels of the ramp had to be replaced because of its bad state.
The Audi A6, with shift tiptronic and fully of series, also featured with different security systems, including a sort of anchor of 65 kg that is implanted under the car if this was losing control. Finally, the Audi A6 managed to scale back the track of the Pitkavuori, at first, at 4,200 rpm, and to about 60 km/h, up to 47 metres in height, which had been his particular goal. Uwe had to complete the process a total of eleven times.
That feat remains in the memory of Audi, to the point that it remains a recurrent motif in ads modern, as this 2013.