Audi Innovation Research

Audi Innovation Research (AIR) Office Beijing decodes the fascinating country of China. In Beijing, the team lives with the city’s hectic tempo, which is much faster than in Europe. Mission: to help Audi to develop products, services and experiences.

AIR's mission – finding the next big thing

What does it mean to have an edge? To be number one? The best, the fastest? In a literal sense, having an edge means being one step ahead. For Audi, that means finding the right way to respond to global megatrends in the fields of digitization, sustainability, and urbanization. These decisions have a big impact on a customer's living space, their wishes and visions, and ultimately will define the future of mobility.

Audi Innovation Research analyzes these trends and takes a close look at what they mean for the Audi brand, researching and designing innovations that have the potential to revolutionize mobility. Within AIR's offices in China, teams are chipping away at the drivers of societal change and coming up with new ways to capture this “edge through technology” – now and in the future.

The AIR Office in China – AIR Beijing

For Audi China is the most important market - by far,  this makes the expectations of the local customers to the key point. China is developing at an incredible speed. The country has triggered a fundamental change and is leaving the old clichés behind: Copying was yesterday; the cliché of the so-called “workbench to the world” is passé. On the contrary: China is becoming a driver of innovation. Meanwhile, about a third of all patent applications now come from China. In Beijing, well known as the country’s media and high-tech hub, one feels the fast pace and the contrast of tradition and progress.

Audi Innovation Research - Beijing

The Team

Yu Zhao (Scott)

Yu Zhao (Scott)

Research Lead

Nǐ Hǎo, my name is Yu Zhao (Scott). I have been leading all the research activities in Audi Innovation Research (AIR) since Nov of 2020. I have more than 13 years’ experience in marketing research and trend research in the Chinese market. Understanding customer is my passion, I am always curious to listen to customers and understand their stories. China is the single biggest market for Audi. Chinese customers are unique and complicated. As a company which places customers at the center of everything we do, it is crucial that Audi understands Chinese customers so that we can provide the best in class premium product and experience to our customers.   

My mission in AIR is to be the ambassador of Chinese customers’ voice inside the company and to bridge the understanding between east and west.

Yu Zhao

Yunhui Tong (Nicole)

Yunhui Tong (Nicole)

Senior Research Analyst

I'm Nicole, former management consultant and entrepreneur. I joined AIR  in August 2020 as senior research analyst.
I believe in the highly competitive Chinese automotive market, the important thing is to advance fearlessly with curiosity as the key and never stop questioning ourselves, as we are now standing on the edge of a new frontier, a new era!

Shen Li

Shen Li

Senior Market Research Analyst

My name is Shen and have joined the AIR team since August 2018. My focus fields are digital and design related topics and I enjoy solving challenges together with colleagues in other departments.  
In recent years tremendous progress has taken place in the automotive industry globally, and we will provide unique China perspective and keep driving changes from insights gathered through various research projects.

It is an era of radical innovation in the automotive industry and we will make sure that Audi takes the lead by providing deeper insights.

Shen Li

Qingyang Wang (Jan)

Qingyang Wang (Jan)

Market Research Analyst

My name is Qingyang Wang and I have joined the AIR in the early 2020. I am mainly responsible for market research projects with the focus on sustainable product, digitalization and innovation. I hold a master’s degree in the field of intelligent driving from the Dortmund University of Technology. We investigate feelings, thoughts and desires of our customer to bring innovation insights from China to the globe.

China will play a crucial role for Audi’s success story to be progressive, premium and prestige in the future.

Qingyang Wang

AIR team coordination

Frank Dieminger

Frank Dieminger

Walking new paths and shaping them; this is what is driving me. At Audi I am able to live this passion since 2011: first of all, within the Technical Development division in the area of sustainable product development, later on, within the sales division. The constant of my career is my sense for new business models linked to the expertise to test and implement them.

This background led me to Audi Innovation Research in 2017. Here, I can combine my knowledge with the challenge of coordinating our team’s efforts, defining synergies and deriving solutions for our international markets.

Approach and Projects

Explore. Analyze. Transfer. The AIR Office in Beijing explores the Chinese market and its development. Audi gets a behind-the-scenes peek into the customer’s world through interviews, workshops, and collaboration with trend receivers. This collected information is then analyzed and transferred between departments.


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