DETROIT: VW eyes new budget brand
Volkswagen will decide this year whether to introduce a new budget brand aimed at developing markets.
If the company decides to go ahead, it would almost certainly start in China, where it achieved a near-25% increase in sales to 2.15m in 2012.
But India and other markets such as Mexico could also be targets for a low-cost VW brand.
The aim would be to bring a car in about GBP1,200 (US$1,900) below VW's current cheapest offering, the up!, according to Ulrich Hackenberg, who heads the company's product planning and engineering divisions.
"It will be tough but, with our experience, not impossible," added Hackenberg. "Such a car can only be built in a country with low production costs.
"The suppliers and the materials would have to be localised - deeply localised. By sourcing the second and even third-tier parts in those countries we could save a lot of money."
One issue is the different requirements of the various new markets. China would want a fairly large car while India would want something small so the fundamentals would have to be "flexible and capable of derivatives".
Hackenberg added: "We would be thinking to sell it under a new brand name because you cannot enlarge the offer of any brand (VW) too far."
It would also have to be more than just a basic budget car, Hackenberg said. "It has to fulfill not only mobility - the customer wants to love his car. It needs to have good styling and offer optional equipment which the customer can maybe buy later."
Hackenberg said any such car from VW would meet more than basic safety requirements.
"We would make our decision based on the competition in that market. If the competitors had a three-star car then maybe we would aim to go for four stars."
Over 500 vehicles have been updated in our live database of current and future new passenger car product over the past week, and we've added new future models....
LMC Automotive's service provides customers with the very latest monthly estimates of passenger car production across all of Europe. Updated monthly and provided model-by-model, and available only via...
The media days for the 2013 Frankfurt Internationale Automobil-Ausstellung (IAA) are 10 & 11 September. Each of the following vehicles is a world premiere at the show....
Renault might have to be as patient in trying to establish electric cars on the market as Toyota was over the introduction of hybrids, a top executive said....
Sales at Volkswagen Group's Bentley division rose 9% in the first six months of the year to 4,279 units from 3,929 in the same period last year....
The Volkswagen car brand boosted first half sales 4.4% to 2.91m vehicles worldwide in the first half of 2013. June volume inched up 0.5% to 501,000....
- COMMENT: Tesla Model X - the elephant in the room
- Europe diesel forecasts revised down
- COMMENT: Where will VW 'emissionsgate' end?
- THE WEEK THAT WAS: Volkswagen, diesel, recalls
- PSA Peugeot Citroen CEO Carlos Tavares interview
- Prosecutors u-turn on Winterkorn probe
- Defiant Bosch backs diesel but quiet on Volkswagen
- Volkswagen UK recalls 1.2m group diesels
- VW may recall up to 11m cars
- Tesla starts Model X deliveries
- Ford Motor Company (F) - Financial and Strategic SWOT Analysis Review
- Global light vehicle safety systems market- forecasts to 2030
- Global light vehicle engine technologies market- forecasts to 2030
- Global light vehicle electric motors market- forecasts to 2030
- Global light vehicle OE glazing market- forecasts to 2030