VW has big plans for its ‘New Small Family’

Volkswagen unveiled its new Up! Concept, a small rear-engine car, at the Frankfurt Motor Show last month. Speaking with the press in Frankfurt, Volkswagen CEO, Martin Winterkorn, said that the Up! concept was a “real Volkswagen.” He confirmed that the concept is one variant of a potential range of vehicles that VW is calling it’s “˜New Small Family”.

Now according to a confidential planning document revealed to Automobilewoche, Volkswagen has officially confirmed that production of Volkswagen’s lineup of rear-wheel-drive, rear-engined microcars will begin in September 2010. Within Volkswagen the new entry-level cars are known as the biggest and most important project since the Gold replaced the iconic Beetle.

Winterkorn says that the Up! concept represents everything he wants VW to stand for: low-priced mobility, environmental concern and technology. With those three things in mind, Winterkorn hopes to offer a whole range of vehicles based on the flexible architecture of the Up! Concept. As we’ve told you before, Volkswagen will offer a convertible variant, a minivan variant, a rumored SUV variant and hybrid variants.

Sources are saying that the Skoda plant in Vrchlabi, Czech Republic, is being considered as the production site. Volkswagen plans to sell 4.16 million units over a nine-year lifecycle of the first generation of its New Small Family.

Volkswagen will reveal a minivan version of the Up! concept at the Tokyo Motor Show followed by a plug-in hybrid version at the LA Auto Show next month.


Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required)

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