By on June 2, 2014

2015 VW Golf Main

In an effort to keep its U.S. customer base satisfied — and to potentially boost sales — Volkswagen is planning on delivering the goods to the market at a faster clip than current.

Bloomberg reports VW U.S. CEO Michael Horn expects new models to arrive every five years with major refreshes after three years; currently, new models arrive in showrooms every seven years, while major refreshes come in the fourth year:

Customers want quicker change. We’re working to shorten the life cycle of the products to bring more new features and design elements, in terms of face-lifts, to the market quicker. We believe we have a positive business case. It commercially makes sense that we move.

The new product cycle won’t begin until 2017 at the earliest, and must still meet management approval before implementation can commence, further diminishing hopes of moving 800,000 units out of U.S. showrooms annually by 2018; Horn recently stated VW’s U.S. operations would focus more on “realistic targets in the short-term.

The CEO also said he and a number of execs within the parent company had been meeting every other month since January to discuss how best to get a handle on the U.S. market, while 50 individuals from the automaker’s various departments attended a two-day summit to throw in their two cents on the matter. The summit focused on fleet fuel efficiency, product lineup and speed of product cycle.

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12 Comments on “Volkswagen Will Bring US Product Faster To Market Beginning 2017...”


  • avatar
    GMat

    Slow down and build it right

    • 0 avatar
      brettc

      I don’t know if VW needs to be told to slow down. They’re doing just fine on their own with getting new models to dealer lots as slow as humanly possible.

      Build it right is something they should definitely pay close attention to.

  • avatar
    Detroit-X

    If the same mistakes arrive on a faster schedule, that will really help? I’d rather have a $5000 rebate.

  • avatar
    FractureCritical

    maybe they should just focus on building durable products that people want. Bland German flavor cars built in Mexico that (hopefully) survive the warranty period only get you so many rubes. I’d bet they could do a (real) midcycle refresh on their cars with some actual style and bump the bumper-to-bumper warranty to 10 years/120k miles and see floor traffic increase substantially.

    they could also find the guy who thought it was a good idea to re-badge dodge minivans, kill him with fire (after knee-capping him with a ballpeen hammer and making him crawl the length of a dodge minivan) and then bring over a friggin modern three row microbus. that might help, too.

    • 0 avatar
      30-mile fetch

      “Bland German flavor cars built in Mexico that (hopefully) survive the warranty period”

      Reliability stats don’t back up that statement at all.

      “…that people want”

      The bland Americanized Jetta is selling 60-70% more than the previous generation and the Passat is selling 3 times as many. VW is getting part of the formula right. But the delay in getting the North American market a competitive CUV is certainly hurting their sales.

      • 0 avatar
        FractureCritical

        If they were doing it right, we wouldn’t be having this discussion, would we?

        And if reliability on VW’s is so good (which, as a former VW owner, I don’t agree with) then why not actually dispel the notion of crappy cars with a best-in-class warranty? It certainly worked for the Koreans

      • 0 avatar
        snakebit

        Let’s add that the ‘bland’ current Passat is assembled in Tennessee, not Mexico, and the current US-bound Golf/GTI is West German-built, though the next version Golf destined for us might be a Mexican product, but still not any blander than a Corolla or Cruze. As for reliability, don’t base current product upon cars built older than 2005.If my late model Rabbit is any indicator, the newer products are very dependable, and I’ve had several Honda, Acura, and Toyotas to compare that with.

  • avatar
    Jacob

    Finally more companies are promising not to treat the US customers as 2nd class citizens.

    • 0 avatar
      CoreyDL

      By selling them the same crap in a faster timeline? If the product doesn’t improve, it’s just making your car look older more quickly. This will hurt your resale value more than anything else.

      Additionally, it always takes a year or two to work the bugs out for each major redesign. Now, you’re going to have -more- years of “first year or two” models.

  • avatar
    Verbal

    You just used “U.S. customer base” and “satisfied” in the same sentence.

  • avatar
    Davekaybsc

    The Hyundai/Kia warranty is not as iron clad as you may think. Still I agree, a long powertrain warranty may do A LOT to get people who have otherwise ruled out VWs because they don’t want to deal with towing the car to the dealer when its 5 years old.

    It can be “somebody else’s problem” for Audi/BMW/MB, let the third owner morons who think they got a screaming deal on a $20K 535i learn their lesson the hard way. VW buyers are much more likely to finance than lease though, and that means they are going to want something that will still work after the 3/36 lease period.

    Audis have certainly improved quite a bit post 2005, VWs… ehhh maybe look a bit beyond your own personal anecdotes. According to True Delta, if you own an ’06 Jetta 2.0T right now, you’re in a world of pain, and even the ’09 hardly has what I would call Civic level reliability.

    Passats are even worse. If you have a 5 year old Passat right now, chances are you wish you would’ve gotten an Accord instead. Hell, the 2013 seems to be in a brawl with the Nissan Altima for “most unreliable car in the segment.”

    If VW would be paying so much on warranty claims that they can’t afford to do it, well I think that’s the answer right there, isn’t it?

  • avatar
    hybridkiller

    Would love to see some actual data to support all this hate. And please, not J.D.Power (20% of buyers didn’t like the cupholders, therefore the vehicle is unreliable).
    Some of you guys sound like an old comedian who’s been telling the same stale, outdated jokes too long – maybe think about getting some new material.

    2013 vehicle sales totals…

    Toyota – 9.98M
    GM – 9.71M
    VW – 9.70M

    Why would so many suckers buy such POS cars? Maybe 2014 will be the year all these fools wise up, and VAG finally goes out of business.

    [I\'ll see your hyperbole and raise you sarcastic hyperbole]


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