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VW News: Volkswagen Board Member Says It Would Be "Suicide" For Skoda To Enter U.S.

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As we have been reporting since this summer, Skoda is putting serious consideration into entering the U.S. market. Currently, a decision is expected sometime next year. But ask their parent company, Volkswagen what they think of the idea of Skoda entering the U.S. and they would likely say something to the effect of this,

“We may be crazy, but we’re not mad. Entering this huge market with an unknown brand, a model range focused on Europe, and a non-existent dealer network is pure suicide. Furthermore, the last thing Volkswagen of America needs now is in-house cannibalization,” said an unnamed Volkswagen board member to Automobile Magazine.

Without having any support from the parent company, Skoda's plan of entering the U.S. seems dead in the water. Whether this happens or not remains to be seen.

There is one other interesting tidbit from Automobile Magazine. Reportedly, Volkswagen was considering replacing certain models in U.S. with slightly restyled Skoda vehicles badged as VWs. This idea was scrapped however which is a shame since we could see the likes of the Superb being an excellent replacement for the current Passat as an example.

Source: Automobile Magazine


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Skoda does not have the baggage VW does, this might actually make sense...

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38 minutes ago, A Horse With No Name said:

Skoda does not have the baggage VW does, this might actually make sense...

Agree with this, right now VW name is MUD to most consumers and except for hard core fans, their current product line up is not winning any conquest buyers and they are currently I bet loosing existing ones over Dieselgate!

Depending on what they do in the next 12-18 months, they just might need to replace the VW dealers as rebadged Skoda Dealers or at least add Skoda specific models to the VW dealers. Have both in the same place.

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10 minutes ago, dfelt said:

Agree with this, right now VW name is MUD to most consumers and except for hard core fans, their current product line up is not winning any conquest buyers and they are currently I bet loosing existing ones over Dieselgate!

Depending on what they do in the next 12-18 months, they just might need to replace the VW dealers as rebadged Skoda Dealers or at least add Skoda specific models to the VW dealers. Have both in the same place.

Or at least some sort of rational recovery plan in place...VW reminds me of Air France 447, where the pilots through simple errors took a perfectly flyable plane and made basic aviation errors, killing everyone on board.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Air_France_Flight_447

VW is not even making basic changes that would rationally ensure their survival. I really love the Golf Alltrack, but one model plus the GTI is not enough to carry the US market.

Local dealer where I bought the Jetta was down 25-30 cars a month over where they were ten or fifteen years ago before diesel gate, things have obviously not improved since.

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12 minutes ago, dfelt said:

Agree with this, right now VW name is MUD to most consumers and except for hard core fans, their current product line up is not winning any conquest buyers and they are currently I bet loosing existing ones over Dieselgate!

Depending on what they do in the next 12-18 months, they just might need to replace the VW dealers as rebadged Skoda Dealers or at least add Skoda specific models to the VW dealers. Have both in the same place.

 

This absolutely totally untrue, and you have nothing to back it up. VW sales are UP, and that is with existing models netting sales gains. With new products about to drop in the coming months- and in critical segments- they will only continue to see growth. VW isn't closing up shop and suggesting they do so is absurd.

 

Bringing Skoda here was only going to happen as a last resort if VW had to exit the US market. That is obviously not going to happen. Skoda cannot coexist with VW here. There would be far too much overlap. VW is already hampered by VAG not wanting to step on Audi's toes. Throwing another brand into the mix would be disastrous. Especially one with no equity among US buyers. 

VW just needs to stay the course and focus on marketing their current models and continuing to bring new products to market. The TDI deal will soon be water under the bridge, and though they may have burnt some of their loyal buyers, and lost some sales due to lack of TDi offerings, it is totally possible to bounce back from this. Hell, look at Toyota and GM.

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6 minutes ago, Frisky Dingo said:

 

This absolutely totally untrue, and you have nothing to back it up. VW sales are UP, and that is with existing models netting sales gains. With new products about to drop in the coming months- and in critical segments- they will only continue to see growth. VW isn't closing up shop and suggesting they do so is absurd.

 

Bringing Skoda here was only going to happen as a last resort if VW had to exit the US market. That is obviously not going to happen. Skoda cannot coexist with VW here. There would be far too much overlap. VW is already hampered by VAG not wanting to step on Audi's toes. Throwing another brand into the mix would be disastrous. Especially one with no equity among US buyers. 

VW just needs to stay the course and focus on marketing their current models and continuing to bring new products to market. The TDI deal will soon be water under the bridge, and though they may have burnt some of their loyal buyers, and lost some sales due to lack of TDi offerings, it is totally possible to bounce back from this. Hell, look at Toyota and GM.

They are also not currently selling small crossovers, the whole SUV lineup is dated and unappealing, they have clung to the beetle and CC far to long, and they are selling cars at fire sale prices.

While I do not expect them to die tomorrow, they are by no means doing what they should to pull ahead in the US auto market.

They are still thinking too much like Germans, and trying to force a German way of thinking on the US auto market.  They need to act like they are serious about the US auto market if they are going to make a dent.

Yes, sales are up, but up over a year ago when we were two months past diesel gate...

Really serious work and a change in attitude need to happen at VW if they ever want to be more than one or two percent of the domestic US auto market.

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Just now, A Horse With No Name said:

They are also not currently selling small crossovers, the whole SUV lineup is dated and unappealing, they have clung to the beetle and CC far to long, and they are selling cars at fire sale prices.

While I do not expect them to die tomorrow, they are by no means doing what they should to pull ahead in the US auto market.

They are still thinking too much like Germans, and trying to force a German way of thinking on the US auto market.  They need to act like they are serious about the US auto market if they are going to make a dent.

Yes, sales are up, but up over a year ago when we were two months past diesel gate...

Really serious work and a change in attitude need to happen at VW if they ever want to be more than one or two percent of the domestic US auto market.

Despite being the oldest CUV on the market, the Tiguan is actually a competitive product and is still selling well. And it's replacement will be here within 6 months. That is in addition to the Atlas. The CC makes up a fraction of VW sales, and is not vital to the brand's sales numbers. It is getting a replacement sometime next year, anyway. The Beetle is a niche product that will never do large numbers. There will continue to be special models here and there. The Beetle is nothing but a money maker at this point. It costs very little to build them. It doesn't need huge sales numbers. Passat numbers are up, GTI and Golf R sales numbers continue to increase, and Golf SportWagen sales are increasing, too.

In addition to the Tiguan and Atlas, the E Golf is on the way, there will be a smaller CUV to slot below the new Tiguan, and the Jetta and Passat are both due for replacement in the near future. If VW continues with their plans moving forward, they will be fine. A new van in the vein of the Bus would really be a wise move that would bolster sales, as well. Something is in the works, but Idk how close it is, or exactly what form it will take. 

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5 minutes ago, Frisky Dingo said:

Despite being the oldest CUV on the market, the Tiguan is actually a competitive product and is still selling well. And it's replacement will be here within 6 months. That is in addition to the Atlas. The CC makes up a fraction of VW sales, and is not vital to the brand's sales numbers. It is getting a replacement sometime next year, anyway. The Beetle is a niche product that will never do large numbers. There will continue to be special models here and there. The Beetle is nothing but a money maker at this point. It costs very little to build them. It doesn't need huge sales numbers. Passat numbers are up, GTI and Golf R sales numbers continue to increase, and Golf SportWagen sales are increasing, too.

In addition to the Tiguan and Atlas, the E Golf is on the way, there will be a smaller CUV to slot below the new Tiguan, and the Jetta and Passat are both due for replacement in the near future. If VW continues with their plans moving forward, they will be fine. A new van in the vein of the Bus would really be a wise move that would bolster sales, as well. Something is in the works, but Idk how close it is, or exactly what form it will take. 

Do you sell VW's at work?

E golf has technical issues, would find VW battery tech suspect.

I hope like crazy VW survives, I love their products. One positive is that they are not at this time offering zero percent to move iron...

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Sales might indicate up against last year, but off from before that. At least here in Washington state VW is hurting compared to what they did before. Every auto has zero down, zero first month payment and .9% interest for 60 months when you look at specials via www.vw.com. 0% for 60 months on Golf and Tiguan. Yet then if you go out to the local dealer web sites, it gets even more interesting with thousands off each model, oil changes for life, maintenance covered free during warranty period. 

I get the feeling that VW is hurting far more than the sales numbers indicate. Talking to people about what they think, one does not get a rosey feeling when you ask a person, "What do you think of VW auto's?"

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30 minutes ago, ccap41 said:

Dear FCA,

Take note.

Sincerely, Everybody

Thank you, captain obvious.....! 

(Not meant with the sound of sarcasm that reads with.....but FCA is not just neglecting new product they are actively working towards their own demise....)

Edited by A Horse With No Name
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2 hours ago, dfelt said:

Sales might indicate up against last year, but off from before that. At least here in Washington state VW is hurting compared to what they did before. Every auto has zero down, zero first month payment and .9% interest for 60 months when you look at specials via www.vw.com. 0% for 60 months on Golf and Tiguan. Yet then if you go out to the local dealer web sites, it gets even more interesting with thousands off each model, oil changes for life, maintenance covered free during warranty period. 

I get the feeling that VW is hurting far more than the sales numbers indicate. Talking to people about what they think, one does not get a rosey feeling when you ask a person, "What do you think of VW auto's?"

 

Well, considering there are no TDI's to sell, of course the numbers are going to be down from before Dieselgate. That's obvious.

Incentives are strong across the entire market, that's nothing new or anything to put much stock in.

Dealers the nation over, regardless of brand, advertise stupid prices everyday. You may or may not qualify for them. Again, nothing of merit there. 

It would seem a lot of people think they are worth buying seeing as in how they are still posting projected or increased sales in most of their models. What people may or may not think about a brand they may or may not ever have intentions to purchase from don't count for much. It'd be like me asking you what you thought about Ferrari. It doesn't matter, because you're not buying a Ferrari regardless of what your thoughts on them are. The blue collar Midwest worker who has a union job wasn't buying a VW anyway. What he thinks of the brand means about as much as what he thinks of evolution.

 

 

2 hours ago, A Horse With No Name said:

Do you sell VW's at work?

E golf has technical issues, would find VW battery tech suspect.

I hope like crazy VW survives, I love their products. One positive is that they are not at this time offering zero percent to move iron...

 

I do now, yes. I went back to my old dealer. 

Incentives across the board at VW are really no heavier or lighter than usual. Some models are considerably less incentivized they have been in the recent past.

Edited by Frisky Dingo
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1 minute ago, Frisky Dingo said:

 

Well, considering there are no TDI's to sell, of course the numbers are going to be down from before Dieselgate. That's obvious.

Incentives are strong across the entire market, that's nothing new or anything to put much stock in.

Dealers the nation over, regardless of brand, advertise stupid prices everyday. You may or may not qualify for them. Again, nothing of merit there. 

It would seem a lot of people think they are worth buying seeing as in how they are still posting projected or increased sales in most of their models. What people may or may not think about a brand they may or may not ever have intentions to purchase from don't count for much. It'd be like me asking you what you thought about Ferrari. It doesn't matter, because you're not buying a Ferrari regardless of what your thoughts on them are. The blue collar Midwest worker who has a union job wasn't buying a VW anyway. What he thinks of the brand means about as much as what he thinks of evolution.

An absolute metric crap ton of truth here....

2 minutes ago, Frisky Dingo said:

 

Well, considering there are no TDI's to sell, of course the numbers are going to be down from before Dieselgate. That's obvious.

Incentives are strong across the entire market, that's nothing new or anything to put much stock in.

Dealers the nation over, regardless of brand, advertise stupid prices everyday. You may or may not qualify for them. Again, nothing of merit there. 

It would seem a lot of people think they are worth buying seeing as in how they are still posting projected or increased sales in most of their models. What people may or may not think about a brand they may or may not ever have intentions to purchase from don't count for much. It'd be like me asking you what you thought about Ferrari. It doesn't matter, because you're not buying a Ferrari regardless of what your thoughts on them are. The blue collar Midwest worker who has a union job wasn't buying a VW anyway. What he thinks of the brand means about as much as what he thinks of evolution.

 

 

 

I do now, yes. I went back to my old dealer. 

Incentives across the board at VW are really no heavier or lighter than usual. Some models are considerably less incentivized they have been in the recent past.

The guys at my local VW dealership actually seem a little bit encouraged.  I really, really hope the Sportwgon/Alltrack does well for them, would love to own them.

Powering the Alltrack with a TDI from the GTD  would be the best of all worlds, but we will never see that here....

GTI really is the best car under 30K in many ways....

Golf R is absolutely lust worthy also.  Last time I was in the VW dealership a very affluent lesbian couple was in the midst of purchasing one...seems like the R buyers are a very diverse lot, which is a good thing.

Be interesting to see what happens with the TDI buy back....

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20 minutes ago, A Horse With No Name said:

An absolute metric crap ton of truth here....

The guys at my local VW dealership actually seem a little bit encouraged.  I really, really hope the Sportwgon/Alltrack does well for them, would love to own them.

Powering the Alltrack with a TDI from the GTD  would be the best of all worlds, but we will never see that here....

GTI really is the best car under 30K in many ways....

Golf R is absolutely lust worthy also.  Last time I was in the VW dealership a very affluent lesbian couple was in the midst of purchasing one...seems like the R buyers are a very diverse lot, which is a good thing.

Be interesting to see what happens with the TDI buy back....

 

It is a more diverse buyer pool that buys GTI's and the like than I have ever seen. Everyone from young kids, to old retirees and everything in between. It's nuts, and also very cool.

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1 minute ago, Frisky Dingo said:

 

It is a more diverse buyer pool that buys GTI's and the like than I have ever seen. Everyone from young kids, to old retirees and everything in between. It's nuts, and also very cool.

...maybe I will be part of that pool soon...who knows?

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4 minutes ago, A Horse With No Name said:

...maybe I will be part of that pool soon...who knows?


Can't go wrong with the GTI or the Alltrack either one. Both phenomenal little cars.

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Just now, Frisky Dingo said:


Can't go wrong with the GTI or the Alltrack either one. Both phenomenal little cars.

Yeah, hoping VW has a very good 2017...they could use something to break right for them....

Time will tell.

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20 minutes ago, Frisky Dingo said:


Can't go wrong with the GTI or the Alltrack either one. Both phenomenal little cars.

That's kind of their problem is that is all they REALLY have going for them right now. The GTI/Jetta platform are exactly that, phenominal, but the rest of their lineup is very "meh".

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3 minutes ago, ccap41 said:

That's kind of their problem is that is all they REALLY have going for them right now. The GTI/Jetta platform are exactly that, phenominal, but the rest of their lineup is very "meh".

The Passat and Tiguan still find plenty of buyers. And again, they have 2 new vehicles due out in just months. They have nothing but good things coming.

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Anddddddddd in that lays the problem. VW clearly markets to the quirky customer and seems to miss the rest of the country. They come across as a very generic, blah way too conservative auto company with nothing that stirs the passion in me.  

In fact the only thing that comes to mind is that VW I associate with the Make Love, Not War Drug using Hippies of the 60's. Auto's that are always clogging up the roads and going slow.

Where is the  "Fahrvergnügen" ? I remember my parents checking out VW in the 90's and both were Meh, just did not resonate other than a cool commercial, but the actual auto's just missed everything that the rest of the auto companies seem to hit.

Here is where I think VW has failed to realize that their German marketing program does not really work in the US. What fly's elsewhere in their larger markets seems to be what really holds them back here.

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They're just last year's VWs anyway....  bringing them over would be like VW trying to rebuild the Mercury brand in the US. 

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2 minutes ago, Drew Dowdell said:

They're just last year's VWs anyway....  bringing them over would be like VW trying to rebuild the Mercury brand in the US. 

Outstanding analogy that makes perfect sense.

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1 hour ago, A Horse With No Name said:

...maybe I will be part of that pool soon...who knows?

Ya sure about that?

VeeDub sure made caca out of certain things in dat pool!

poo-in-the-pool-o.gif

Seriously though:

The Golf GTI is one incredible machine. The only reason why I cant see myself in one is because back in the day in my 20s, some of my friends at that point in time drove Golf GTIs. VR6s. Corrados too with that same engine.  I made fun of them since I was an American gung ho car guy with the pony car scene. Yeah, they in turn made fun of me for V8s and all....This was the 1990s when the Tuner car craze was hot.

In other words, I cant bring myself to own cars I made fun of back then...

 

 

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      About a year ago, European antitrust regulators became very suspicious that BMW, Daimler, and Volkswagen were involved in a longstanding automotive cartel that colluded on restricting certain emissions control devices for the market. Raids were carried out at various facilities, but nothing came out. That changed yesterday as the European Commission has opened a formal investigation.
      "The Commission is investigating whether BMW, Daimler and VW agreed not to compete against each other on the development and roll-out of important systems to reduce harmful emissions from petrol and diesel passenger cars," said Commissioner Margrethe Vestager, head of competition policy for the European Commission in a statement.
      "These technologies aim at making passenger cars less damaging to the environment. If proven, this collusion may have denied consumers the opportunity to buy less polluting cars, despite the technology being available to the manufacturers."
      The technologies in question include selective catalytic reduction systems that reduce the amount of nitrogen oxides from diesel cars, and "Otto" particulate filters that capture particulate emissions from gas vehicles.
      The commission also revealed the group discussed common requirements for car parts and testing procedures, though there isn't evidence to say if they were illegal or not. It is also mentioned that there was no evidence that the automakers coordinated in the use of defeat devices.
      Daimler and Volkswagen told Reuters they were cooperating with the commission. BMW said it would continue to support the authority of the commission.
      Source: Reuters, European Commission


      Antitrust: Commission opens formal investigation into possible collusion between BMW, Daimler and the VW group on clean emission technology
      Brussels, 18 September 2018
      The European Commission has opened an in-depth investigation to assess whether BMW, Daimler and VW (Volkswagen, Audi, Porsche) colluded, in breach of EU antitrust rules, to avoid competition on the development and roll-out of technology to clean the emissions of petrol and diesel passenger cars.
      Commissioner Margrethe Vestager, in charge of competition policy, said: "The Commission is investigating whether BMW, Daimler and VW agreed not to compete against each other on the development and roll-out of important systems to reduce harmful emissions from petrol and diesel passenger cars. These technologies aim at making passenger cars less damaging to the environment. If proven, this collusion may have denied consumers the opportunity to buy less polluting cars, despite the technology being available to the manufacturers."
      In October 2017, the Commission carried out inspections at the premises of BMW, Daimler, Volkswagen and Audi in Germany as part of its initial inquiries into possible collusion between car manufacturers on the technological development of passenger cars.
      The Commission's in-depth investigation focusses on information indicating that BMW, Daimler, Volkswagen, Audi and Porsche, also called the "circle of five", participated in meetings where they discussed inter alia the development and deployment of technologies to limit harmful car exhaust emissions.
      In particular, the Commission is assessing whether the companies colluded to limit the development and roll-out of certain emissions control systems for cars sold in the European Economic Area, namely:
      selective catalytic reduction ('SCR') systems to reduce harmful nitrogen oxides emissions from passenger cars with diesel engines; and 'Otto' particulate filters ('OPF') to reduce harmful particulate matter emissions from passenger cars with petrol engines. The in-depth investigation will aim to establish whether the conduct of BMW, Daimler and VW may have violated EU antitrust rules that prohibit cartels and restrictive business practices, including agreements to limit or control technical development (Article 101 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union).
      At this stage, the Commission has no indications that the parties coordinated with each other in relation to the use of illegal defeat devices to cheat regulatory testing.
      The Commission will carry out its in-depth investigation as a matter of priority. The opening of a formal investigation does not prejudge its outcome.
      Other topics discussed by the companies
      The Commission's formal investigation concerns solely the emissions control systems identified above. These were only some of the issues discussed by the "circle of five". Numerous other technical topics were discussed, including common quality requirements for car parts, common quality testing procedures or exchanges concerning their own car models that were already on the market. The "circle of five" also had discussions on the maximum speed at which the roofs of convertible cars can open or close, and at which the cruise control will work. Cooperation also extended to the area of crash tests and crash test dummies where the car companies pooled technical expertise and development efforts to improve testing procedures for car safety.

      At this stage the Commission does not have sufficient indications that these discussions between the "circle of five" constituted anti-competitive conduct that would merit further investigation. EU antitrust rules leave room for technical cooperation aimed at improving product quality. The Commission's in-depth investigation in this case concerns specific cooperation that is suspected to have aimed at limiting the technical development or preventing the roll-out of technical devices.

      View full article
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