New Delhi: Volkswagen AG recently confirmed its plans to downsize the number of product platforms from 12 to 4. The platform cut-down will help the German automaker reduce developmental costs and speed up the creation of new models.
Now, it looks like the product portfolio will go on a diet as well, and more than 40 models across the company’s brands could be phased out in the coming years.
Apart from Volkswagen passenger cars, the group currently includes brands like Skoda, Seat, Audi and Porsche. Put together, these companies currently produce around 340 models, but the sales of some of the products haven’t been satisfactory.
The group also owns premium nameplates like Bentley and Lamborghini, along with Ducati, MAN trucks and VW commercial vehicles. It isn’t known if these brands will be affected by the downsizing plans.
VW AG will be investing heavily into the development of electric and autonomous cars to become a powerful player in ‘green’ transport over the next decade, but it will simultaneously be increasing its focus on popular segments like SUVs and crossovers as well.
Following the dieselgate scandal, Volkswagen AG has faced several lawsuits from governments and private entities alike. The penalties the company is facing amount to several billion Euros, with rumours suggesting that some brands may be sold to generate the funds.
However, amid the reports of financial strain on the organization, VW India has turned profitable. While Volkswagen’s sales in India are relatively modest, the company’s plans to utilize India as an exporting hub have helped them with revenue generation.
How the group’s global plans will affect India remains to be seen, but for now, VW is focusing on India-centric products like the Ameo compact sedan with a budget car platform for emerging markets on the books as well.