The Nose Knows: Audi Employs Professional Car Smellers


No, it's not April again. This is real.

We know that Audi is obsessed with its interiors. One look at the driver-centric layouts, the standard leather upholsteries, and the beautiful accent pieces make it clear. The things you see, touch, and hear have been designed to exacting specifications.

But, this automaker doesn't ignore one of the essential senses: smell.

An actual team of professionals, employed by Audi and called the Audi Odor Team, works with engineers and designers in the interest of building and producing "neutral-odor" vehicles.


"They work to ensure a consistently pleasant odor level in Audi vehicles. Plastic parts that give off unpleasant odors, leather that smells like fish oil or floor mats that exude an aroma of onions don’t stand a chance at Audi. The same goes for materials that can give off unhealthy emissions in the car. Around 500 different components from each model’s interior are analyzed using the human nose as a measuring device. Audi applies the strictest standards in its fight against odors and sets the benchmark for the industry."


How does the Nose Team tackle the issue of "new-car smell"?

It's surprisingly complicated.

  1. Odor engineers test the overall smell of the car
  2. Then, they locate which parts are making the most smell
  3. They figure out exactly which material or materials are the cause of the odor
  4. Engineers and designers improve or replace the material with something with a more neutral smell
  5. New or improved parts are all put back together into the vehicle, and the new overall smell is analyzed



If you're interested, you can check out the video below, featured by Car Throttle, to see the Note Team in action:


Does Audi have a fifth-sense department addressing Taste? We sure hope so.



Categories: Audi, Technology
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