VW says may enter low-cost market with China-built car



REUTERS

Published — Saturday 26 January 2013

Last update 26 January 2013 1:58 am

| نسخة PDF Print News | A A

WOLFSBURG, Germany: Volkswagen may build its first low-cost car in China, a company executive said, as the German group ponders a move into no-frills vehicles to compete with Renault’s Dacia and Nissan’s Datsun.
More than 3 million so-called budget cars are sold in China every year, making it the biggest market in that segment, and VW would tap growing demand by teaming up with one of its two Chinese joint venture partners if the project is approved, VW brand development chief Ulrich Hackenberg said.
“That’s an issue we’re currently looking at,” Hackenberg said in an interview at VW’s Wolfsburg headquarters.
Europe’s biggest car maker is looking at a price range of between 5,000 and 10,000 euros ($ 13,300) for the cars, which may include a van, estate and a small sedan, company sources said on Oct. 12.
This may undercut VW’s 9,850-euro Up! city car, the brand’s smallest and cheapest model that is only sold in Europe and Japan. The two-door vehicle came to market in December 2011 and will be launched as VW’s first electric-powered car at the Frankfurt auto show in September.
VW lacks a strong presence in markets such as India and Southeast Asia, with their growing small-car segments. A 2009 partnership with Suzuki Motor Corp, designed to benefit from the Japanese manufacturer’s leading position in India, fell apart in 2011 in a public squabble.
VW Chief Executive Martin Winterkorn said at the Detroit auto show on Jan. 13 that a decision on a budget car for emerging markets would be taken this year.
The German multi-brand group is working on hitting cost targets for the budget car and has not decided yet whether it would keep the VW badge or have a different brand.
“If one enters this segment for the first time, it’s necessary to keep investments very low,” Hackenberg said.
VW would use pre-existing mechanics from models that have gone out of production or are nearing the end of production, rather than develop new costly underpinnings for the brand from scratch, he added.
Hackenberg said it was unclear whether the group would bring a new budget car to Europe’s embattled market because it could cannibalize its cheaper brands Seat and Skoda, and the firm was not yet sure if there would be demand for such a vehicle.

What's happening around Saudi Arabia

RIYADH: The Ministry of Education (MoE) has allocated over 180 clinics for schools in Riyadh and directed all its departments across the Kingdom to recruit health advisers at schools with more than 100 students.Work has already started on introducing...
RIYADH: The Moroccan experience in desert tourism is largely similar to that of Saudi Arabia, which boasts of a unique diversity in culture in its different regions, Prince Sultan bin Salman, president of the Saudi Commission for Tourism and National...
JAZAN: Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman visited the advanced field hospital of the Armed Forces in Jazan on Tuesday.He was reassured about the injured in the ongoing battle. He conveyed the greetings of Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King S...
JEDDAH: The planned “North Thunder” military exercise is a clear message to Iran and the countries in the region it supports that any hostile intentions and actions will be firmly dealt with, an expert has said.The military drill is scheduled to be h...
RIYADH: Syrian conjoined twins will be separated at the King Abdullah Specialist Children’s Hospital at the King Abdul Aziz Medical City (KAMC) in Riyadh on Sunday.According to a KAMC spokesman, the forthcoming surgery will be the fourth and final st...
JEDDAH: Education Minister Ahmed Al-Issa has issued an order to establish a department for school security. It will be be linked organizationally to the general supervisor of school safety and security at the ministry.According to the decision, schoo...
JEDDAH: From delivering mails for Saudi Aramco to captaining Saudi Arabian Airlines’ first flight to New York, Jazza Al-Shammari’s career story is unique.“I started my career as a postman with Saudi Aramco in 1959 and continued the primary studies at...
RIYADH: A team of the King Faisal Specialist Hospital & Research Center (KFSHRC) has identified a gene responsible for cardiomyopathy.Dr. Zuhair bin Nasser Al-Hasnan, KFSHRC medical genetics consultant, said the team conducted a study on a Saudi...
JEDDAH: The Pakistan Welfare Society (PWS) organized a free medical camp and discussion on health for women at the Pakistani Consulate recently.Doctors and specialists diagnosed patients and distributed free medicines to needy patients, and arranged...
JEDDAH: Yemen Vice President and Prime Minister Khaled Bahah has thanked Saudi Arabia for standing by his country during tough times.Speaking at the World Government Summit in Dubai on Tuesday, he said: “Our GCC brothers, particularly Saudi Arabia, s...
RIYADH: Saudi Arabia joined the rest of the world in intensifying public awareness on cancer with activities spread over the week supporting the global cause that aims to save millions of lives every year by raising awareness and education about the...
RIYADH: Chairman of ACWA Power International Mohammed Abu Nayyan thanked King Mohammed VI of Morocco for personally inaugurating Morocco’s first solar power plant, Noor1, built by an international consortium led by his company.“We were extremely priv...
RIYADH: The Ministry of Health is considering imposing an asset declaration as well as an absence of interest conflict testimony on its employees as a measure in fighting corruption.Health Minister Khalid Al-Falih made the announcement at a one-day f...
DAMMAM: Abdussalam Kanniyan, chairman of the International Indian School in Dammam (IISD), has been honored with the “Person of the Year 2015” award by Vatakara NRI Forum, a community group in the Eastern Province.The award was based on his outstandi...
RIYADH: Andrej Plenkovic, the leader of the European Parliament Foreign Affairs Committee delegation, on Tuesday hailed Saudi Arabia for its yeoman services in looking after the displaced Syrians in countries such as Lebanon, Jordan and Turkey.“We fu...

Stay Connected

Facebook