New budget brand will produce a model to undercut the Up
Volkswagen boss Martin Winterkorn has stated that production of a new super-budget car will start in 2015.
During an interview for a German magazine, Winterkorn said,“We are developing a budget car for the price range between €6000 and €7000 (Rs 4.3 and 5.1 lakh). Some three million cars are sold in this segment each year in China alone.”
The development of the new car, according to Winterkorn, won’t be carried out entirely by Volkswagen. He told Der Speigel, “We have to adopt new methods. The base development will be carried out in Germany. It will then be further developed in China with our partner and produced from 2015."
Keeping the cost of the car so low is only possible by building and partly engineering the car in a low-cost country, with both parts and materials also being sourced locally. It’s likely that existing Volkswagen technology will be used in the new budget car, further helping to keep costs down.
Volkswagen’s technical chief, Ulrich Hackenberg, has previously confirmed that the car will eventually come in different body styles. The car will be sold under a new brand name that is yet to be confirmed.
Currently Volkswagen is focusing on creating the first example of the super-budget car for China, where it would also be built. Hackenberg told Autocar the car wouldn’t look cheap and it wasn’t designed to simply fulfil the need for mobility.
“It has to have good styling and the owner should be able to upgrade the specification over time. The owner wants to be proud of the car.”
Production of the new car is expected to begin in 2015. Initially available only in China, it may also later be offered in India.
Issue: 210 | Autocar India: February 2017
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