During the first years of the
twentieth century, motorbikes. In 1905, the first cars were build,
and some were even used (succesfully) in racing.
In the 1928, the
manufacturing of cars was stopped. Fiat acquired the rights to the
NSU name from a company which had run into severe financial
The FIAT company "NSU
Automobil AG" started building NSU cars again in 1957, at the same
time the then called NSU Werke AG did the same with the (then) new
Prinz. This lead to much confusion, and in 1959, the FIAT cars
where marked NSU/FIAT. In 1960 the NSU company was renamed to "NSU
The Sport Prinz was
introduced in 1959, followed by the Prinz 4 in 1961.
In 1964, the first production
car using a Wankel rotary engine was introduced after 8 years of
development of the engine: the Wankel Spider.
On March 10, 1969, a contract
was signed uniting AUTO UNION GmbH and NSU Motor Works AG and
establishing a new joint company, AUDI NSU AUTO UNION AG. Auto
Union Gmbh was partially owned by the Volkswagen AG.
There had been too many
problems with the revolutionary wankel engines for NSU to keep
going. The last car produces by NSU was the Ro 80. This model was
one of the first luxury cars with a wankel engine; this, and
several other items, made the car one of the last 26 contenders in
the Car Of The Century Celebration.