Case study- VW Up! will be built in a place called Bratislava; Will it be built in India as well?
Shrawan Raja, I'm the Founder & CEO of IndianAutosBlog.com. I love teamwork and talking about cars.
With a lot of difficulty, I have read the translated version of teknikensvarld, a Swedish car magazine and this is how the story goes
What is the VW Up!?
The VW Up! is a concept which was shown to crowds at the Frankfurt Motor Show back in 2007. Similar to the Tata Nano, the VW Up! has its engine driving the rear axle and is placed under the rear seat.
Why did it spark our interest?
Simple. VW announced it will build the Up! in India back in 2007. A target price of around $7,500 was announced and it would compete with the smaller hatchbacks, such as the Hyundai Santro, Maruti Alto and the Chevrolet Spark in India. It was also rumored back then that VW would team up with Bajaj to see the concept through to an Indian production line.
What's the latest information on the VW Up!?
An official announcement has arrived from VW that it will use Bratislava as a production centre for its Up! family of city cars from 2011 onwards. Bratislava is in the country of Slovak, the former borders Austria and Hungary.
Will there be many variants based on the VW Up!?
Yep. You bet. You'll have to think of exercising every bit of that platform to make a car every class of the car buyer spend. The Up! concept will be much like this Laura-Jetta game VW is playing in India. Underneath the skin, its mostly the same stuff.
The Up!'s story will be much like it because Skoda will use it to make a car, SEAT, another VW brand will make something using it. VW might obliviously use it to make a petol-electric SUV and then might pass it on to Porsche who'll attract the critics from as far as Siberia.
What are the variants and will I be able to buy one?
VW's announcement states clearly the twin requirements will be addressed- Variants will me made for both the entry level buyer as well as the premium customers. 3 and 5-door versions will be made. It is not clear at this point whether all the VW brands will produce both those variants, but VW is definitely bringing the low cost version to India.
Can you relate this to any developments lately?
Last month, listen to what was said about Skoda's sub-$8000 car-
“The VW board has decided to step on the gas to roll out two small cars - one from the VW stable and another from Skoda - over the next 24-30 months. The technology for the cars have been finalised and now product development is underway”- Thomas Kuehl, Skoda Auto India operations head and board member (sales & marketing)
So there you have it. Skoda will use the Up!'s platform to roll out its small car. And if he's talking about the Up!, Skoda could run this car out of its Indian production line at Pune, which it initiated recently.
What are the engine options? Will the mileage be good?
I'm guessing so. According to reports, the VW Up! and its family will not use the rear engine rear wheel-drive layout but instead will go with the conventional front engined-front wheel drive arrangement for better parts management across the family. Three and four cylinder engines in turbocharged and naturally aspirated formats will spin the front axle.