VW to take tiny spin in the city
A TINY city car is on Volkswagen’s local plan.
Volkswagen Australia head Anke Koeckler confirms the company would like to get the production version of the little Up car here soon.
‘‘We are still working on this but we are keen enough to get it out within the next two years,’’ Koeckler says.
‘‘Better earlier than later,’’ she says, ‘‘because I think there is a demand.’’
Motor shows over the past four years have seen a string of Up concepts including reardrive boxer engine, hybrid and electric versions with hatchback, convertible and multi-purpose bodies.
The production version that will be unveiled at Frankfurt Motor Show in September, however, is set to have a superfrugal three-cylinder engine, and will seat four cosily, we imagine, in a tiny three-door hatch body.
Koeckler says that while the segment still is in its infancy, the Up might attract attention overall to the city car option.
‘‘We have not a lot of competition in this segment, but I think a lot of customers might like this segment once we have the Up to offer,’’ she says.
‘‘In launching this car in the Australian market, the strong currency might help us to get the positive answer from our headquarters.’’
In the meantime, while Koeckler looks forward to plugging gaps at the other end of the Volkswagen line-up by adding new versions of the Amarok ute, she says firm timing still has not been set.
‘‘We are working on having the single-cab Amarok, as we promised during our launch and we might have this car actually by next year,’’ she says.
‘‘We are working also on automatic versions, because we know we have to have the full range for the Amarok. But I can’t give you any feedback on dates, to be honest.’’
The near future for Volkswagen will focus on the new Touareg arriving in July.
Koeckler says that will boost flagging sales of the SUV, which has suffered supply problems.
‘‘We didn’t have the production,’’ she says.
‘‘The current model Volkswagen Australia has been selling was out of stock production some time ago.
‘‘Dealers have been able to work with only the remaining stockpile.
‘‘There’s not a lot of stock left. And I can tell you we are getting a lot of requests asking when the new Touareg model is coming.’’