By on March 14, 2013

No overcapacity problems at Volkswagen – at least not globally, and especially not in China. “Within the coming years, we will build at least ten more plants – seven of those in China,” Volkswagen chief Martin Winterkorn said today in Wolfsburg, with Automobilwoche taking notes. By 2016, Volkswagen will have capacity for more than four million units in China, that’s about half of VW’s current worldwide output.

This year, Volkswagen will start production in Urumqi, Foshan and Ningbo. Two new component plants will open this year in Changchun. In 2014, the Tianjin transmission plant will follow. In addition, the supervisory board approved and additional Chinese plant for 300,000 units.

More factories go up in India (Scania), Russia, (MAN/ St. Petersburg, VW/Kaluga), and Mexico (Audi/ San Jose Chiapa.) Volkswagen has more than 100 plants worldwide, twelve of those in China.

Volkswagen wants to off-set a tanking European market by building cars in more promising regions. Assuming that Volkswagen can sell all those cars, world domination could be achieved within the decade.

 

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17 Comments on “Building Boom At Volkswagen: Ten More Plants...”


  • avatar
    Waterview

    Given the amount of grief and venom directed at the quality of VW’s vehicles on TTAC, I’ve made a point of casually asking VW drivers that I encounter about their experience. Of course it’s not scientific and it’s limited to the relatively small area in which I travel around the Chicago MSA, but I haven’t yet had a single person indicate that they’d buy a VW again (followed by horror stories about windows, doors, electrical, etc.).

    How does VW keep selling these things? Somewhere, some group of people must think VW’s are the greatest thing since the internet.

    Just wondering . . . . .

    • 0 avatar
      goacom

      You did not ask me! I’ve had a Passat B5 and B6. No significant issues with either (knock on wood), but I don’t keep my cars for more than 7 years. I have suffered crappy dealer service though. Great drivers cars, and I would still consider buying one again.

      • 0 avatar
        CelticPete

        My g/f new Audi has been problem free thus far. That’s not saying a whole lot since its brand new. But my Dad had an Audi for two years that he says was just “brilliant.” He just dumped it because he decided to drive his five series even in the winter and wanted to slim down to just one car for one guy..

        VWs are certainly LESS reliable. But will they leave you stranded by the side of the road and in the shop all the time? I don’t think any car since the Yugo will do that..

    • 0 avatar
      akitadog

      Based on my relatively painless history with my 2008 GTI, I have enough confidence to bet on another VW. I’ve owned mine since new for over 5 years, it’s got over 57K miles on it, and I’ve probably put about $750 into it for repairs due to unexpected issues.

      The next time around, I’d put my money on the upcoming MkVII Jetta Sportwagen TDI as the family car, for my wife. Our main need is more cargo room for a growing family, and it would be big enough to provide that cargo room, and extra rear legroom, but still not be too much bigger than her current Mazda3 5-door, which has had more issues than my VW.

      As for me, I’m ready to move on to a Cadillac ATS with stick. It’s the American 3-series I’ve been waiting, no, longing for.

    • 0 avatar
      LeeK

      You didn’t ask me either. Four VWs in the past five years. All have been reliable save a 2008 R32, which turned out to be a lemon and I dumped it. It happens. But one bad car didn’t sour me on the brand at all. Look at this month’s Consumer Reports at the VW Owner Satisfaction rating, which asks the question, “Would you buy this vehicle again?” For the Eos, GTI, Jetta, Jetta Spotwagen, Passat, and Touareg, the answer is most often yes.

      In the same issue, VW long-term reliability as a brand is in the middle of the pack, above GMC, Chevy, Volvo, Mini, Buick, Chrysler, Ford, Lincoln, Jeep, and Dodge. While many posters here delight in taunting anyone who dares to challenge the conventional wisdom that all VWs are ticking time bombs, the data speaks otherwise.

    • 0 avatar
      corntrollio

      They didn’t ask a lot of people, although this place is often an echo chamber of VW-hate.

      My theory is that it certain things come down to care and maintenance, and many first-time VW buyers weren’t the type to do it by the book. I also wonder if part of it is the service/dealership experience, which is legendary for being terrible. Sometimes the dollar amounts quoted are 3-4 times what an independent mechanic would charge for a similar service, so there’s probably some exaggeration going on too.

      Yet what’s noticeable is that the same people who complain fixing a VW is expensive sometimes say that they spent something with 3 zeros fixing their GM/Ford too, which is always surprising to me as well. That alone causes me to take these “stories” with a grain of salt.

      That said, people often suggest that plastics of the Common Era of VW Complaints are not up to snuff.

    • 0 avatar

      I heard similar horror stories from people I personally know. E.g. in one case – replacement of (all) electric wires inside Passat because of leaks in the body or in addition to the typical annoying falling windows/brake switch/coil replacements at any mileage and multiple times – breakdown of the water pump impeller on the freeway in the 200X Jetta with about 50K miles which left guy stranded on the freeway and cost him more than $1000 to replace. Impeller was made of plastic and cracked and then broke down- typical low quality cost cutting stuff you cannot see but will find in Volkswagens. Even the d beautiful and shiny stuff you can see and touch becomes drab, torn and embarrassing after first few years. So from my personal experience I avoid even considering any VW and by extension Audi, though Audi makes higher quality cars but very expansive to maintain and fix in US. Evidently Americans consider Audi as a luxury and VW as a premium brand. To me it is just alternatives to Ford or Opel (read Buick) though Audi is a kind of more premium one.

  • avatar
    NN

    100 plants worldwide, 12 in China, only 1 in the USA. For it’s size, VW doesn’t invest much at all in the US. Think of Toyota’s investment here vs. VW. Maybe VW calculates that most US consumers will always place long term reliability/durability at high importance, and they can’t beat Toyota at that. Nobody in China has yet owned cars long enough to know/care about long term durability. With VW owning the best selling car rankings in China, world domination for them will probably come very, very soon.

    • 0 avatar
      european

      or maybe VW calculates that the US will implode financially and the not so mighty $ will hyperinflate, a scenario that will leave most of the US consumers dirt poor. you think you can print print print all your problems away, well think again.

      there was an article by mr. lang a while back, where he asks the B&B what is american luxury today. i didnt comment then, but i’d say american luxury tomorrow will be just having ANY new car.

    • 0 avatar
      goacom

      Not true. VW has been in China since the 1980s. They were the first foreign automaker to set up shop in China. They have a very long track record there.

    • 0 avatar
      silverkris

      I think it’s a realistic calculation on VW’s part – the projected growth rate of motor vehicles in China is going to be faster than in the USA. VW is China’s #1 vehicle manufacturer and they are dealing from a position of strength, as an early mover there.

      By comparison, VW in the USA is starting off from a smaller base serving a mature motor vehicle market where they have a much smaller market share. Remember, they also have plants in Mexico that produce cars for the USA market. So it’s possible that at least in the short to medium term they feel they have enough capacity to serve North America.

    • 0 avatar
      NormSV650

      “…Toyoda said. Toyota still has much to learn from GM, a company that was already No. 1 when Toyota was barely born.” No more new plant announcements until 2016.

      http://www.detroitnews.com/article/20130307/AUTO0104/303070396/1148/auto01/Toyota-chief-says-new-auto-plants-put-hold-stresses-safe-growth

  • avatar
    rnc

    This is a good time to watch the auto industry (if enjoy studying business), basically there are four that are known will make it, Toyota, VW, Ford, and Nissan-Renault (and I am talking the mainstream makers, lets assume that BMW and Mercedes are fine), for the remainder its sort of becoming a game of who will die first and who gets the carcass. GM despite it’s rinse off, still has the albatross of a million retirees to support and Opel) and Honda, which has structural cost issues, amplified by currency issues since they are export dependent (and I’m sure lots and lots of people will scream over that one, but I see thier beautiful products of the 90’s and thier products now, theres costs coming out somewhere, reputation only lasts so long) are the next two most likely to make it if they can deal with the issues they face. For the rest…(Think Fiat will end up spinning everything besides the European part of the Fiat Carmaking operations to the Fiat Industrial side and leave the other to die if need be or get the italian unions to finally make some concessions, think the brilliance of taking Chryco becomes more and more apparent month by month).

  • avatar
    Waterview

    +1 Goacom

    Glad to know there’s at least one out there . . . . .

  • avatar
    schmitt trigger

    My theory on how VW keeps on selling vehicles worldwide (and of course, this theory could be completely wrong!)

    All of the countries that I’ve travelled to and have seen a VW commercial, they strongly emphasize their German-ness.

    From the US “Das Auto” to other places “the power of German engineering”, or “German technology”.

    Germany, as a country, has a well-deserved reputation with technical prowess, sterling engineering, and quality manufacturing. Of course, the B&B here know that this is not 100% true.
    But VW very cleverly exploits this “common knowledge”.

    • 0 avatar
      RobertRyan

      @schmitt trigger
      I do not think that is that at all as VW was associated here with a strange car that made a “put put ” sound.
      Audi, Lamborghini, Skoda , Porsche, Bugatti, Bentley etc are also part of VW and they have helped VW change its image dramatically. The current lineup by VW itself has not hindered that process.


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