NSU

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Story of the NSU creation

NSU: The History of a Pioneer German Automobile Manufacturer The carmaker NSU has a long and illustrious history that appeals to car lovers, motorsport enthusiasts, and those with an interest in vintage vehicles. NSU (Neckarsulm-based car manufacturer) is a German brand that has its roots in 1895 and a legacy that continues to impact the world of automobile today. Founded by Austrian Heinrich von Pierer and German Christian Müller with just 115 employees, NSU quickly rose in the ranks of car brands to become the largest motorized vehicle provider in Europe. Their very first car-building project was an internal combustion engine powered by two-strokes, allowing cars to travel faster and further than ever before. NSU earned the success and reputation they have today due to their passionate commitment to continually improving the performance of their cars. Over the decades, they've sustained their hard-earned reputation as one of the best vehicle manufacturers aroiund through a commitment to outperforming all expectations. NSU’s impressive racing success was showcased in 1905, when they entered a race in Germany and sped to be the first car to take a average 100 km/h speed to an incredible 136 km/h over a distance of 56 km. Just a year later in 1906, they achieved another spectacular feat by traveling the 2,400-kilometer course between Berlin and Rome at an impressive average speed of 122km/h. In 1920, new engines for NSU began to be developed solely in-house and this newly developed engineering philosophy has since made NSU one of the most reliable and highest quality carmakers for generations. The demand for NSU cars was so high that the factory was capable of producing 1665 vehicles in 1924. Undoubtedly, NSU moved from a small bike manufacturer to a highly successful manufacturer of vehicles. Just two years later, NSU would go on to break 51 records and take the world’s speed record. This win was achieved with a 700cc engine and a two-seater car which was driven by none other than their own driver, the famous Alfred Neubauer. Neubauer flew an NSU Type 2 Discus over the 5 km long time trial course at a stunning speed of 155km/h, an achievement which would impact automotive history. NSU continued to experience rapid growth and in 1928 the company changed its name from “NSU Fahrzeugwerke AG” to “NSU Motorenwerke AG” in order to align with the ever-growing amount of cars they were now manufacturing. As years and redesigns followed, technology and innovation kept on heavily being integrated into the vehicle’s design and we now recognize NSU as one of the main contributors to the modern car technology sector. In 1951, the first foreign arm of NSU was introduced in order to appeal not just to German but also to international consumers. In the same year, the world’s first Wankel engine was introduced. The engine operated with an internal combustion process which allowed cars to take turns that are faster and smoother than ever before and shifting from one speed to another gave a whole new feeling to the car. This new engine was also more lightweight and additional room was created for passengers and luggage. NSU inevitably led the charge for rotary engine technology and their most iconic car, the NSU Neckar Prinz, featured a Wankel rotary engine. The company continued to reach successful milestones with their cars and pushed on the boundaries of what was possible at the time.In the late 50s, their production figures rose with over 100,000 cars produced in 1959. In 1969, NSU merged with Volkswagen, a more established player in the automotive world, and soon after the two companies added Audi to their fold. In 1977 they produced their first Volkswagen Polo, showcasing cutting edge technology, great engine performance and superior safety standards. NSU’s merging with Volkswagen marked the end of the company’s era as a standalone manufacturer, however, their legacy of innovation, courage, and passion still live on today. The accomplishments of the iconic brand throughout their years of operation is a thrilling testament to the ambition and determination usually seen only in those shaping the automotive industry. Whether admired by motorsport hounds or vintage car collectors, the history of NSU marks a long successful journey in the development of the automotive world we live in today.

Story of the NSU models

Nestled between the giants of the German automobile industry are a plethora of lesser known companies that have also gone down in history. Nestled among them stands out from the rest, NSU Motorenwerke AG, a company that was founded in Germany in 1873, and which played a leading role in the early development of the automobile thanks to its pioneering spirit, technological innovation and racing success. The story of NSU can be traced back to Heinrich Stoll and Christian Reith, two master mechanics who founded the Neckarsulm bicycle factory in 1873. The company soon expanded and beginning in 1886, Stoll and Reith began to produce and market automobiles. By 1900 they had created a new workshop specifically for the assembly of the first NSU automobile with the ingenious and ground-breaking idea to let the motor rotate the wheels with a chain drive. Throughout the years, NSU quickly became a leader in the development of automobile technology and engineering. In 1907 NSU was one of the first companies to build and market engines with four cylinders. This technological preeminence foreshadowed the emergence of the brand as a leader in motorsport and in 1909 NSU scored its first victory on the ‘Prinz-Heinrich’ racing circuit in Berlin. In the 1920s, NSU was one of the key suppliers in the German automobile market. The company presented models of various sizes and even launched the 'Kleinauto', a revolutionary concept that was part of their strategy to become mass-manufacturers. NSU had a diverse range of cars. but only two of them became real legends: the Prinz models, Prinz I and Prinz II. The Prinz was launched in 1954 and quickly became a success story. It was considered a luxury car and its superb engineering and state-of-the-art technology inspired affection and admiration in passionate drivers. Known as the classic of classics, the Prinz also set trends with its iconic 12-spline disc brakes and the round headlamps that have been reinterpreted by other models since. The design of the Prinz II was inspired by its predecessor, the Prinz I, and was presented to the public in 1959. The model had a timeless design and was instantly recognisable with its elongated rear windowed trunk. The Prinz II also provided a powerful engine with twin carburettors and well-balanced mechanics. Its performance was remarkable for the time and solidified the Prinz II's role as an iconic piece of auto engineering. Across its history, NSU has proved that it is a major player in the world of automobile design and automotive engineering. With a strong presence in motorsport and cutting-edge design and technology, NSU has produced some of the most renowned classic cars in the world. Its two classic models, the Prinz I and II, are testaments to the passion and ingenuity of the company, a must-have for any automotive enthusiast. Shaped by passion, these two models will forever stand tall, a reminder of the pioneer spirit and outstanding engineering of NSU Motorenwerke AG.

Story of the NSU in motorsport

Since the early 1900s, the German car manufacturer NSU has a long motorsport history ranging from drag racing to Grand Prix circuit racing. Born out of a bike factory in Rhine-Westphalia, NSU’s commitment to racing felt unique to the brand, and quickly set them leading in motorsport production with their 1903 NSU S63 model, which went on to become the world's fastest production car from 1906 to 1909. The NSU S63 was also the first German production car to boast an internal combustion rear-engined setup, which maximised the engine giant's power on the track. As its speed grew NSUs motorsport reputation helped to shape an international legion of fans, particularly through its involvement in the prestigious Targa Florio road race held in Sicily from 1906 until the mid 70s, a race in which the NSU was extremely competitive. By the 1920s NSU achieved competition success across Germany, and it was to the same success that the brand resorted to a new team-based format in the late 20s and early 30s. The NSU works effort began to compete atop classifications at the International Eiwagen race in their 1927 Rennlenkwagen, piloted by their world-renowned racing team captain, Ernst Hess. The class win was followed up with an impressive victory in the 1928 Eiwagen Trophy. Another innovation of the NSU racing team of this period was the introduction of diesel engines, as in their diesel based Saurer Alpenwagen C8. A prototype of this car achieved the unthinkable; a world land speed record of a smidge over 100mph in 1931. This was on top of furthering success in world-leading innatune racing events from 1933 onwards. The 30s also saw NSU delve into the world of Grand Prix motor racing, entering the German Grand Prix of 1935 under teams from NSU Motorenwerke and Audi, followed soon after by a victory at the 1936 European Grand Prix with their Typ C. The weekend ended with Audi and NSU cars taking the first four out of five podium positions, cementing their presence and sales in the Grand Prix market. In the decades to come, NSU navigated a tumultuous shift in their brand identity, partly due to backing efforts from Audi, again placing the focus of motorsport prowess to the rear of its marketing priorities. This didn't last until the 21st Century, with NSU quickly rising to birth the KTM X-Bow sports car and subsequently deliver renewed attention on its traditional motorsport success into the debate of the world's elite racing classes. Since its humble beginnings in the early 1900s to the modern thoroughbred KTM X-Bow, NSUs motorsport heritage has inspired generations of automotive enthusiasts to keep automotive history and the brand, alive with a passionate reverence. NSU’s iconic motorsport heritage still underpins the look, feel and engineering excellence of the current NSU line-up, creating a must-have brand that bridges the generations of automotive excellence together.

Anecdotes about NSU

Nestled in Ingolstadt, Germany, NSU is an iconic worldwide car manufacturer, well-known and respected for its strength and reliability, setting the benchmark for luxury performance since 1873. The story of NSU is one of passion and determination for quality. Founded by four innovative entrepreneurs, NSU started out with two-wheeled machines such as bicycle and tricycles. It wasn’t long before NSU decided to manufacture cars, and their first car was the Pandion, released in 1906. From then, it was only a matter of time until NSU released their sports and race cars. The NSU Type 10/14 debuted in 1909 which featured a revolutionary transversely-mounted one-cylinder engine; a combination that was way ahead of its time. NSU also employed grand designs which paved the road for aesthetically-pleasing cars. In 1910, the NSU 30/50 was unveiled and sold across Europe, making NSU the first German car maker to extensively market Germany’s car industry. But nothing compared to NSU’s greatest car build: the Type 10/22. This was the car that secured NSU’s legacy, and it was an success. Released in 1922, the 10/22 sported a four-cylinder engine with a similar structure of the Type 10/14, but lighter. The design introduced beautiful curves and lines that are still iconic to this day and set the standards for future sports cars. Known for its speed and a maximum engine speed of 100 km/h, the 10/22 dominated the race and rally circuit. Following numerous successes on motorsport scene, NSU’s popularity kept growing in Europe and around the world. The Type 25 and TY 101 proved to be a popular model until 1957 when the Prinz series was introduced. The Prinz was an economical car that proved to be the perfect model for the discerning motorist. Launched in 1958, the Prinz became synonymous for quality and safety, and certainly catered to the affluent people between 35 and 65 years old. Today, NSU is remembered as a pillar of the VW group and is a firm favorite of vintage car fans and motorsport enthusiasts around the world. NSU is truly one of the most remarkable success stories in automobile history, a story of passion and innovation by the four founders that still resonates today. Not just an automotive brand but a symbol of excellence and unparalleled performance, NSU is irreplaceable in the heart and minds of people who respect the power of innovation, premium quality and remarkable craftsmanship.

Which NSU for which budget?

Which NSU for a low budget?

Are you looking to own a classic car but with limited funds? There’s an iconic German vintage that’s within reach, the NSU. The NSU Motor und Fahrzeug Werke AG was founded in 1873 in Neckarsulm and slowly picked up steam, expanding across Europe and the UK. It's most iconic automobile model line is the Prinz, bearing the NSU branding that translates to “Strength Through Joy”. With its very distinctive sloping flat four-cylinder engine (mounted in the rear) the Prinz married classic 1960s and 70s shape and design with innovative engineering from the company. Due to low production numbers, unique body styles, and overall age, it has become one of the hallmarks of any vintage car enthusiast's collection. The Prinz was introduced as a 4-door standard sedan in 1957 and soon after the Spider variant was introduced. The Spider was a ground-breaking move for the company, having FIA approval for Group 2 (between Groups 1 and 3) racing. This racing popularity meant that it was considered a cult classic and earned its place among motorsport legends for becoming the first French GT Championship winner in 1960. You can acquire an original Prinz 4 for a low budget, however it can be tricky to find models that have been well re-conditioned and maintained, and have all original parts. As such, it is important to find a trustworthy seller and have a third-party vehicle inspection (using professional eye only using vintage parts). Apart from finding an original model in good shape, you may also get lucky and find one that has been respected by the previous owner and has had zero to minimal reported repairs over the last ten years. It may have sun-faded paint, but for a basic mechanical overhaul you’d be hard-pressed to find another classic car for the same money. The current market may or may not offer the same car for the same price due to rarity of the version, and purchasing one of these beauties goes beyond the mere utility of a car from point A to point B; it will instantly give you a deep sense of pride and emotion. Reisting behind the wheel of an NSU Prinz not only means you've got one of the most affordable classics available, but that you also understand the true nature of what a true classic car should be. With its adventurous spirit and passionate story, these NSU cars will bring you smiles of past memories and pave the way to newfound experiences.

Which NSU for a medium budget?

Do you want a modern classic that marks a place in motorsport history – one that’s admired and appreciated by enthusiasts worldwide? Then the NSU could just be the perfect choice for you. This German car from 1969 and earlier commands respect. After all, despite only producing them until 1977, NSU have remarkable achievements in rallies and races. The famous ‘TT’ outperformed cars much more powerful. The ‘Ro80’ began a new trend for rotary engine cars and the ‘Coupe’ polarized opinions in the industry. As well as being powered by modern engines the NSU also has great looks and a great presence. For the classic car lover or the driving enthusiast, a vintage NSU offers options for everyone – whatever your budget. Built for performance as well as luxury, vintage NSU cars, like most classic automobiles of their time, came up with the essentials and simply cut out the unnecessary. Whether you choose a German-made model or a variant made under license such as Necar (the Brazilian NSU car) – you’ll be getting a car with few frills but big thrills. When looking for a car that offers classic charm with all the benefits of reliable modern performance – the NSU is the ideal choice. With spend of a medium budget between £8,000 - £15,000 you can acquire a classic NSU which is sure to be both a conversation starter and a continuing love affair. Rarely does one car hit the world of motorsport so powerfully and passionately whilst earning such a deserved reputation. Manufactured by NSU Motorenwerke AG from the late 1960s and throughout the 1970s, the NSU has achieved legendary status as a collector’s car. It must be seen as a style icon with its unforgettable look and delightfully engineered performance. Here is a classic that is definitely not just a flash in the pan - its huge following makes them sought after from motorsport fanatics right across the world. The NSU is an automobile that offers so much style and performance. Every NSU captures the beauty, craftsmanship, frustration and satisfaction of driving a classic. Its charming road presence with its unique levels of handling, performance and character make it stand apart from the mainstream. This classic automobile is an excellent choice for anyone between the ages of 35 and 65 who is looking for a rare and iconic classic car to enjoy and cherris h. A vintage NSU gives ultimately satisfaction for everyone, whether you plan to get it out on the road, keep it as an investment or show it off in classic car rally events.

Which NSU for a high budget?

For those who love the historical relevance and classic beauty of vintage cars, there is nothing quite like the NSU. One seminal car regularly sought after by those in the know, for the enthusiast there is simply nothing better for a demanding budget than the NSU. Originally designed and manufactured in Germany, the NSU is a remarkable piece of motorsport history, rich with features that shine with beauty and a tremendous mark in racing heritage. Boasting two valve and 12 hp engines, these classic cars provide unmatched power and excellent handling, much of which is attributed to their remarkable engineering feats. Available in both roadster and sedan versions, from 1918 onwards, the NSU had foresaw its racing successes with the latest technology and all the style and flair that go with it. The classic NSU cars are not simply vehicles, they are a passion for those detail-oriented people that can truly appreciate the vintage racing pedigree and the majestic allure of such automobiles. Add to that the stunning two-piston design of the engine, the lightweight construction of the ester-plastic body branded as the “Textimog”, and all the performance that comes with it, and the NSU could very well be called the machine of everyone’s dreams. The ample hood and wide-set steering wheel certainly evoke an emotional response when one properly see’s the NSU up close. But, just like any good work of engineering, the beauty of the NSU is that it easily combines this emotional experience with true racing aspects as found in its excellent acceleration and sudden acceleration which are quite incredible for its time. The undeniable feel of a classic racing car is truly extraordinary, and one can easily become addicted to the precise handling of the NSU in no time. The ultimate gift for any true classic car lover, the breath-taking visuals that come with an NSU car, as well as the raw technical prowess behind it, make it a unique experience that can easily warrant the hefty asking process for these timeless automotive marvels. It’s truly a must have for those with both a passionate side and an affluence for high-budget vintage cars that have been taking away with their ultimate styling of quality and pure racing splash.

This content was crafted with the assistance of ChatGPT, under the discerning supervision of a passionate enthusiast of vintage and classic cars.