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Marlene Knaus: The Ex-Wife Who Shared Life With Niki Lauda

Published Mon Nov 27 2023 By Bsgurung
Marlene Knaus: The Ex-Wife Who Shared Life With Niki Lauda

Marlene Knaus, renowned for her marriage to Austrian Formula One driver Niki Lauda, initially garnered attention through diverse careers predating matrimony. Prior to becoming a notable socialite and style icon in the 1960s, Knaus had established herself as a fashion designer and model. 

Her multifaceted background contributed to her independent means of support, distinguishing her beyond her high-profile union with Lauda. Her pre-marital pursuits in the fashion industry underscored Knaus's individuality, solidifying her status as a prominent figure in the cultural landscape of the 1960s.

Marriage and Divorce With Ex-Husband, Niki Lauda

Marlene Knaus and Niki Lauda, initially meeting in 1975, became a celebrated couple with frequent media appearances before marrying in 1976, leading Marlene to adopt Austrian citizenship. Deeply devoted, she once fainted witnessing Lauda's injuries from a Grand Prix accident. 

Marlene Knaus and Niki Lauda
Image: Late Niki Lauda with his ex-wife, Marlene Knaus together. Source: Pini Mg

Lauda, a pioneering rally driver, achieved Formula 1 World Championship victories and expanded into aviation with companies like Laudamotion. Despite 16 years together, their marriage ended in 1991 amid speculation about Lauda's alleged extramarital affairs. 

Lauda's prior relationship with Mariella Reininghaus and Knaus's connection to actor Curt Jurgens, where they first met, added layers to their personal histories before uniting. The details of their separation remained private.

Niki Lauda's Extra-Marital Affair Ended The Marriage

Despite being a media sensation, Marlene Knaus and Niki Lauda kept their private life largely undisclosed during their 15-year marriage, creating a veil of mystery around their relationship. In 1991, they divorced, and the reason remains unknown.

Speculation arose about Lauda's alleged infidelity, particularly with Birgit Wetzinger, whom he later married in 2008. Reports hinted at Lauda having a son, Christoph, from an extramarital affair. 

The true nature of the breakup, whether due to infidelity or other factors, remains concealed, adding to the enigma surrounding their once high-profile union.

Mother of Two Kids

After marrying, Marlene Knaus and Niki Lauda joyfully anticipated their family's expansion. In 1979, their first son, Mathias Lauda, was born, and in 1981, they welcomed their second son, Lukas Lauda

Mathias, now 41, has followed in his father's footsteps, pursuing a career as an Austrian car driver. Meanwhile, Lukas, aged 39, serves as his brother's manager.

The Lauda family's second generation demonstrates a continued legacy in the world of automotive pursuits, with Mathias carrying on Niki's racing legacy and Lukas actively involved in managing his brother's endeavors.

Her Wonderful Modeling Career

Renowned beauty queen Marlene Knaus began her modeling career in the 1960s, earning acclaim for her exceptional fashion sense and securing roles with prominent brands. Her distinctive loose hairdo became a trend among women. 

Marlene Knaus Husband
Image: Young Marlene Knaus with her ex-spouse, Niki Lauda. Source: Tuko News

Transitioning to magazine covers and design work, Knaus established herself as a multifaceted talent. Beyond her professional pursuits, she passionately supported her husband, Formula One racer Niki Lauda. 

She famously fainted upon seeing his injuries from a German Grand Prix accident, which included burned eyelids and exposure to toxic fumes. Knaus's dedication to Lauda showcased her personal and emotional investment in his racing career.

Ex-Spouse, Niki Lauda Was a Legendary Formula One Racer

Niki Lauda, born Andreas Nikolaus Lauda on February 22, 1949, in Vienna, Austria, was an iconic Formula One racing driver and aviation entrepreneur. Lauda's indelible mark on motorsports history was highlighted by his tenacious racing style and remarkable achievements. 

He secured Formula 1 World Championships in 1975, 1977, and 1984, notably recovering from a near-fatal crash in 1976. Lauda's precision, resilience, and business acumen extended beyond racing, as evidenced by his ownership of airlines like Laudamotion and Lauda Air. 

He Died At The Age of Seventy

Niki Lauda, born in 1949 in Vienna, was a legendary Formula One racer and aviation entrepreneur. With three Formula 1 World Championships in 1975, 1977, and 1984, Lauda's racing career stood out, marked by his recovery from a near-fatal 1976 crash.

Beyond racing, he owned airlines like Laudamotion and Lauda Air, showcasing business acumen. Lauda's precision on the track and resilience in overcoming challenges left an enduring legacy, making him a celebrated figure in both motorsports and aviation.

Net Worth of Marlene Knaus 

Marlene Knaus holds an estimated net worth of around $43 million, primarily inherited from her ex-husband, Niki Lauda, a Formula One icon. Lauda, who amassed a net worth of approximately $200 million before his passing, rose from Formula One to Formula Three, contributing to his substantial wealth.

Niki Lauda Formula One
Image: Legendary racer, Niki Lauda in the frame. Source: BBC

Knaus received a significant portion of his fortune, including a house in Ibiza, Spain. Despite Lauda having two sons with Birgit Wetzinger and an illegitimate son, Christoph Lauda, Marlene, and Christoph were notable beneficiaries of his estate, underscoring the financial legacy left by the renowned racer.

Formative Life and Age

Marlene Knaus, born in 1956 in an undisclosed American state, maintains a private and enigmatic personal history. The exact date of her birth, information about her parents, and siblings, and her educational background, including details of her academic career, are undisclosed. 

Despite this secrecy, it is known that she completed primary and secondary school. With Venezuelan ethnicity, Knaus has successfully kept many aspects of her early life and family background concealed.

Height and Weight Description

Marlene is depicted in images as having a white complexion, dark brown eyes, and long black hair. 

Her approximate height is 167 centimeters, and she carries a weight of around 63 kilograms.

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