Obrigado, Volkswagen!

Cammy Corrigan
by Cammy Corrigan

The Brazilian-American Chamber of Commerce reports that Volkswagen AG has announced it plans to build (cue “Dr Evil” voice) 1 million vehicles in Brazil by 2014. To help this grand notion become a reality Volkswagen will invest €2.3 billion (about $3.5b) into the endeavour benefiting its two assembly plants in Anchieta & Taubate and its engine plant in Sao Carlos. Volkswagen aren’t far off this target; this year Volkswagen expects to manufacture 800,000 vehicles in Brazil. Brazil is also Volkswagen’s third largest market after China and Germany, respectively, so there’s plenty of demand for the Wolfsburg Warriors’ offerings, with deliveries to customers up 70% since 2005. If Volkswagen cars are suffering from alleged reliability issues, it doesn’t seem to be bothering our Brazilian friends.

”The Volkswagen group will strengthen its leading competitive position in Brazil over the long term with these investments,” chief executive Martin Winterkorn said. ”Brazil is one of our most important growth markets worldwide. We expect demand there to rise significantly over the coming years and we are now systematically adjusting our manufacturing capacity.” All of this is just bringing Volkswagen to one step closer to its vision of world domination and as USA Today reports, unlike a certain Japanese rival, Volkswagen is relishing being König der Welt.

Cammy Corrigan
Cammy Corrigan

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  • R H R H on Dec 01, 2009

    My aunt-in-law works for "VOLKS" in Brazil. She might very well work in Taubate -- I'd have to ask my wife. Locally produced Volks/Chevy have a huge advantage over every other player in Brazil due to cost. Import taxes in Brazil for vehicles can hit 100%. I remember reading some car magazines there and I think a Civic Si was something like $100k reais (1.8'ish per dollar). Just eyeballing, I'd guess locally produced cars there are something like 80%+ of the market (Fiat/Volks/Chevy and probably a few others I'm forgetting...Ford?)

  • CRacK hEaD aLLeY CRacK hEaD aLLeY on Dec 01, 2009

    VW lost a lot of ground to Fiat, Renault and others in Brazil. They are not the force they used to be in the 60's, 70's & 80's. There was recently a rash of problems with their new VHT 1.0l engine here. VW used an 'improved' (long-life) oil spec for it's new 1.0l engine and the fluid broke apart in extended contact with our wonderful gas. Very bad things happened to some people that believed VW's words 'the noises are normal'. So it went for more than a year. Warranty wars ensued when valve-trains scored and in many cases journals were galled. Smart people (taxi drivers) went straight to 10W-40, 20W-50 as soon as their cars left the dealer . VW switched back to 'old spec' earlier this year but as usual never formally acknowledged any problem. Just 'isolated issues', they said. Like I said, VW is not the power it used to be in Brazil.

  • Stewart Dean Stewart Dean on Dec 01, 2009

    Correct me if I'm wrong, but wasnt' the VW Fox (a sort of stretched hatch) sold here in the 80's. And IIRC, the sheet metal wast made out of reprocessed gum wrapper tinfoil and rotted out like a generic paper towel in a Bounty ad. I had a friend who bought one and drove it well past the state of leprosy until the shock tower were in imminent danger of giving way. I liked the body form factor, but I'd have to think long and have some heavy-duty reassurance that anything VW exported from Brazil wasn't going to show itself to be a BoS in short order before I'd buy one. And I've been driving VW for some 30 years. VW Germany absolutely, VW Canada or America probably, VW Brazil not likely

    • Th009 Th009 on Dec 01, 2009

      North American-market Mk4 Golfs were also built in Brazil; those have generally not suffered from premature rust. (Mk5/Mk6 Rabbits/Golfs have been imported from Germany.)