Posts Tagged ‘make:volkswagen’

VW Apologizes Again, Tries to Distract Us With Beetles

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Did you come here to read about the two new trims of Beetle or did you come here to hear about VW sweating on stage in LA? Doesn’t matter, you’re gonna be disappointed.

Michael Horn (President and CEO of Volkswagen Group of America), is the most human speaker at most of the shows I’ve been to. The guy who, despite reading from a prompter like the rest, feels like he’s speaking his own words. He cracks jokes that make you smile, not groan, and it never feels like he’s trying to put a spin on things. So when he got on stage and addressed Dieselgate, there was no fear, no fidgeting and no fluff. He acknowledged that it’s a big deal, he took responsibility for it, he apologized and throughout the whole thing he maintained that a solution would be found. Honestly, when something goes wrong at my day job, that’s exactly what I want. “I made a mistake, let’s fix it, and then let’s figure out if we can prevent it from happening again”. Of course VW doesn’t have the luxury of finger-pointing and throwing others under the bus like my coworkers do so they didn’t really have a choice. Ah well.

Full disclosure, I have a Golf R on order and I don’t plan on walking away from it. I don’t care about this scandal, at least not to the extent that some people are claiming to. I’m a Formula 1 fan, I fully expect manufacturers to take whatever regulations they’re given and do whatever it takes to beat them without being caught. I would be blown away if every other manufacturer wasn’t doing something similar. Personally, I think emissions regulations are too strict. You’ve got some of the smartest people in the world engineering these vehicles and some of the dumbest creating legislation around them. If these guys can’t meet consumer expectations and regulations then the regulations need to be reworked. The automotive industry is one of the few where I think consumer expectations are lower than they could be. Watch 90% of people test driving new cars and, I promise you’ll catch yourself smiling along with them as they repeat “That’s so cool!” at each and every feature their existing vehicle doesn’t have.

Now please don’t think I’m a climate change denier or that I don’t understand the impact of vehicles on the environment. I’m not trying to say that vehicles should not be getting consistently more efficient, my problem is that they ARE getting more efficient, it’s just not fast enough for some people. Fuel efficiency is and always will be a selling point for vehicles. Because of this, manufacturers will spend loads of money attempting to make their vehicles as green as possible while still being as fun, luxurious or safe as people want. Isn’t that the goal here? Why do they need extra motivation?

I dunno. I understand why this situation is big news, but I honestly think most people who are legitimately angry either don’t fully understand the impact – both of the emissions themselves and fixing them – or suffer from “I need something to be outraged about” syndrome. I hope VW makes it out of this alive, because they make fantastic cars and it would be a shame to lose them.

Oh, right, they also announced the Dune and Denim variants of the Beetle and brought out the Dune Beetle, which looks just like the first concept we covered in Detroit back in 2014. I’m sure if you cared about those you skipped right to the pictures anyway.

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Volkswagen Brings Quartet Of Beetles To The Big Apple

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Here at the 2015 New York Auto Show, Volkswagen is showing off four Beetle concepts that not only play homage to the Beetle’s past but also provides a preview of what may be coming down the line. Two of the concepts are coupes and two are convertibles and VW has said it is gauging the public’s reaction to determine which of these concepts will make it to production. The next-generation Beetle, which will be moving to the MQB platform which underpins the Golf will probably arrive as a MY2018 Beetle. My guess is one, or possibly all of these concepts will be used to push the last remaining current generation Beetles out the door before the arrival of the next generation.

Some customers in China and abroad have requested that the factory offer a pink color option, and that color is being tested in the Pink Color Edition concept. Painted in pink metallic with grey accents on the mirrors and side mouldings this pink Beetle caters to the trendy, style-concious individual that wants to make a statement with their car.

The Beetle Convertible Denim concept car has what I initially thought was a denim soft top, but it turns out it is just a textured fabric that resembles denim. It is painted in a stonewashed Blue metallic paint and also has grey accents like the Pink Color Edition concept. Moving inside denim-like pockets adorn the backs and sides of the seats. The inner seat surfaces are upholstered in a light blue fabric while the outer surfaces are lined with blue leatherette and the piping is trimmed in white. Various other interior trims and panels are adorned in blue fabric and white stitching and details.

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While the Denim Beetle concept had a nice cool tone to it the other Beetle convertible concept, the Beetle Convertible Wave has a fiery Habanero Orange metallic paint job offset with chrome side mirrors. The seat inserts are in a classic houndstooth pattern that are a throwback to the 50’s and 60’s fashion scene. A wooden dashpad inspired by a traditional surfboard complement the design of the seats.

The last Beetle featured is the R-Line concept. The R-Line concept is finished in a Oryx White Pearl paint with an aggressive looking front bumper featuring enlarged air vents and a glossy black lower front lip that extends down the sides and fender of the car. The side mirrors and rear diffuser are also finished in a glossy black paint job. The dashpad, door inserts and steering wheel feature splashs of carbon fiber because race car. In fact, the Beetle R-Line concept is more than half an inch wider than the standard production car.

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Volkswagen scores dominant 1-2-3 finish at Monte Carlo Rally

Racing calendars change from year to year, but most series have that one race they just couldn’t do without: the Monaco Grand Prix for F1, Le Mans for endurance racing, Dakar for rally raid, the Indianapolis 500 for Indy, the Daytona 500 for NASCAR… and for the World Rally Championship, it’s t…


Volkswagen Cross Coupe GTE is a sleek take on brand’s future CUV

Volkswagen continues its long tease leading up to an eventual US-built, seven-passenger, three-row crossover with the Cross Coupe GTE at the 2015 Detroit Auto Show.

While it’s still affixed with the tinsel of a concept car, there are a lot of details that will arrive on VW’s eventual producti…


Volkswagen Debuts Cross Coupe GTE Concept in Detroit

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Two years ago here in Detroit, Volkswagen debuted the CrossBlue concept, a plug-in hybrid SUV that would slot in above the Touareg. That same year in Shanghai VW unveiled the CrossBlue Coupe and today they are unveiling an update to those concept which they are calling the Cross Coupe GTE. Which of course wears a blue paint job. As the name evolves, so too does the design. Gone are the more concepty headlight and taillights and aggressive body work. The Cross Coupe GTE looks nearly production ready.

VW plans to begin production at the end of 2016 on this new 7-seater SUV so it’s a pretty good bet that we’ll see the curtain lift on a production model next year here in Detroit or possibly New York. While the new SUV will be a 7-seater, the Cross Coupe GTE gives a preview of what is to come in the form of a 5-seater here at the 2015 NAIAS. VW is, by showing off all these SUV variants, essentially showcasing how flexible the underlying MQB architecture is. Size wise, the Cross Coupe GTE is about the same as a Touareg measuring about 4.8m in length, 2.03m wide and 1.73m tall.

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VW previews huge screens, gesture control with Golf R Touch Concept at CES

Volkswagen is showing off the future of infotainment and connected driving at CES 2015 with a fleet of concepts that highlight its latest technology. According to its displays, the coming years might mean gesture-based vehicle controls and electric cars that drive themselves to find their own ch…


VW LogBox and Race App performance data logger for R models [w/video]

Now that it’s got a 300-horsepower Golf R to brag about, Volkswagen wants you to be able to brag about it accurately with the LogBox and Race App performance data logging combo. Plug the LogBox into your VW’s OBD II port and it sends data over BlueTooth to the Race App, measuring variables like …


Krafcik says VW merging with Fiat Chrysler would be a ‘brilliant’ idea

“For sure, these two companies have a natural attraction to each other.” -John Krafcik

Honestly, this is really hard to even imagine, but what if the Volkswagen Group merged with Fiat Chrysler Automobiles? Aside from being easily the largest automaker on the planet, it’d bring the foll…


Volkswagen rules out more potent Polo R

Volkswagen may be planning ever more powerful versions of its Golf, but don’t expect that lust for power to trickle down to the smaller Polo anytime soon as the German automaker has reportedly ruled out the prospect of making a Polo R.

This according to Autovisie, the automotive section of Du…


VW readying two-row CUV concept for Detroit

We’re likely getting yet another glimpse of Volkswagen’s future crossover at the upcoming 2015 North American International Auto Show in Detroit, in January. According to Automotive News, two anonymous sources within the automaker indicate a CUV concept will be shown there. The concept is said t…


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