Remember the Volkswagen Phaeton? Yea, the $60,000+ flagship that rode on a morphed version of the Audi’s A8 platform and had a fairly unsuccessful sales run in the states? Well, that’s not say the Volkswagen Phaeton was bad car, because it was actually quite brilliant. People just had a hard time swallowing the pill of paying for such an “expensive Volkswagen.” That said, we’ve received previous reports before that Volkswagen was going to bring the Phaeton back anyway. But what remained in question was whether it would see our shores again amidst poor sales. Interestingly enough, Volkswagen has reported sound success with the Phaeton in the European market, hence its revival for a new generation.
To clear the air with that question, Bloomberg reports that Volkswagen will be reintroducing the Phaeton to the North American market, and it could be here as early as January. What does that suggest? At bare minimum, Volkswagen is likely to showcase a concept at next year’s North American International Auto Show, in Detroit.
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“A brand as large as Volkswagen needs a halo project in the upscale segment,” Volkswagen’s CEO, Martin Winterkorn told Bloomberg. “We’ve seen what happens to brands that don’t have that kind of project.”
Much like the last generation Phaeton, speculation points to the use of the same Volkswagen Group platform underpinning the Audi A8 sedan. A hybrid version is even planned. Though no details were spared regarding the engine choices. But considering how the last Phaeton used the same engines as the last A8 sedan, ranging from gasoline V6, V8 and W12 options, and a V6 and V10 diesel, it wouldn’t be unreasonable to predict seeing the same four-, six-, eight-, and twelve-cylinder gasoline and six- and eight-cylinder diesel options as the current A8.
– By: Chris Chin