Germany's Volkswagen is to allocate US$1.48 billion of the US$1.7 billion it plans to invest in the Asia Pacific region over the next five years to expanding joint ventures in Shanghai and Changchun.

Volkswagen said in Singapore that it aims to increase Asia Pacific sales by 50 percent over the next five years. The company will introduce a new model every year in China.

In addition to the current Audi A6 and Passat models, Volkswagen will start assembling the Bora (Jetta) in Changchun in 2001 and manufacture a new Polo-based 'crossover' vehicle in Shanghai from 2002. In 2003, the Lupo will also be introduced in China.

According to Volkswagen's Chinese representative, the company is also planning to build China's newest family minicar, the A000, in Changchun. The A000, smaller in size than the Lupo, will be on sale in 2004.

Volkswagen said that the Asia Pacific region accounted for 430,000 sales in 2000, or eight percent of the company's total. It estimates that annual sales in China will grow from the current 336,000 to 450,000, and plans to sell 650,000 cars a year within five years.

The company will invest US$222 million in its Japanese and Singapore operations.

To view related research reports, please follow the links below:-

Review of the German Automotive Industry

Global Car Forecasts to 2005