By on July 7, 2010

Speaking of German car companies doing exceptionally well despite a tanking German car market, there is of course Volkswagen.

The Volkswagen group sold more than 3.5m units worldwide in the first six months of 2010, besting the pretty darn good numbers of the same period in 2009 by about 15 percent, Martin Winterkorn said to Reuters. He predicts (and that’s an easy call based on the half year results) that the Volkswagen group will see record car sales in 2010. What’s driving the new Wirtschaftswunder? The weak Euro, of course. And the strong position of Volkswagen in boom markets such as China.

Nevertheless, VW doesn’t want to rely on the vagaries of the foreign exchange. They are planning a new plant in “North America,” says the Rheinische Post. The plant will make engines. Where in NA is up in the air, but it looks like the southern part of North America, namely Mexico. It was no happenstance that that announcement was made in Puebla.

Meanwhile  in India, Volkswagen seeks to enlarge its footprint in the promising market. The Hindu reports that VW wants to jointly develop products with Maruti Suzuki. VW had bought a 19.9 percent stake in the Suzuki last year. Both companies are jointl working on projects and a car for India could be one of them. Volkswagen’s Christian Klingler told the Hindu: “Of course, there is a possibility of developing products together, but I cannot confirm it.”  Volkswagen has good reason to band together with Suzuki.

Said Klingler: “Suzuki is very strong in the Asian market, including India and Japan. They have knowledge in the small car segment, which is pretty unique. They make small cars and make money. Lot of manufacturers make small cars, but they don’t make money.” True, true, and true.

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5 Comments on “VeeDub Is On A Roll...”

  • avatar
    Chicago Dude

    For people that wondered why Germany did not want to step in and save Greece, this is why. A weak Euro is fantastic for an export-driven country like Germany.

  • avatar

    I’ve driven Audi and VW, and still do. But for the life of me I don’t see VW becoming “mainstream” in the US. I wish them well, and I’ve had good luck, but I really wonder. First, their cars have a bad reputation for quality. Not my experience, but it doesn’t matter what I think as they’ve already got my money.

    Second, VW advertising is geared toward adolescent morons. Is that how they really want to market themselves?

    Third, many of their best products will never come to the US. And if they were imported, they’d be too expensive for Americans. The Passat is a very nice mid-sized automobile, but few people see value in it. What is their solution? Build a larger, softer Americanized car. But if that is what someone wants, why go with VW? It’s not like there’s not a lot of better options in this type of car.

    • 0 avatar

      First, their cars have a bad reputation for quality

      Who was it that said VWs and Audis are “great cars to lease, terrible cars to own?” I think that sums it up nicely.

  • avatar

    VW still needs to prove they can manufacture a decent* gas engine. The 1.8t was crap, the 2.8 produced unimpressive power, the 2.5 drinks too much fuel and the 2.0t was a disaster reliability wise in its first few years (improved now?). Plus, the two bad turbo engines have been mainstays in all of their major models. Not good.

    *when I say decent, I mean reliable. Engines should be good for the life of the car plus reasonable regular maintenance in main-stream cars. While VW’s engines are nice when new, the rest of the equation falls to bits.

  • avatar

    electrical gremlins have popped up in a few friends with various models of VWs. Some are fairly benign, such as a bad ground in a factory stock system which caused a speaker or two so you hear a buzz that gets louder as the car revs, to power locks that loose the power, to constant barrage of idiot dash board lights that keep comming back on, to the ignition not working due to theft prevention issues, etc. I will never forget the 1999 Jetta that I drove one winter regularly that would regularly have its doors freeze.

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