Volkswagen Passat and Honda Accord discontinued

The production of Volkswagen Passat and the Honda Accord have been stopped.  One of the main reasons for the production of these two cars stopping is the low demand for these cars. The company had to stop production as the sales figure estimated by them were nowhere close to what they had thought. Though in the case of Honda, it was seen that with the launch of Civic in early 2013, much of the attention had shifted to the cars that particularly belong to the lower segment. This shift was clearly a tragedy for the company as a result of which the Honda Accord could not manage to get the attention of the masses.

The Sales figures for these two cars are depressing with a sale of around 215 units of the Honda Accord from June to November, while Volkswagen managed to sell 235 units of Passat in the third quarter of the year. These figures were clearly not something that both the companies could carry on their production with.

Honda Accord

On the other hand, Skoda Superb, has done exceptionally well in the market with a sale of over 507 units in the third quarter itself. The increase in the cost of inputs, along with the value of rupee decreasing in the international market, were also some of the factors which lead the company to put an end to the production. Honda and Volkswagen were demoralized with the decreasing profit margins, poor sales and the change in consumer preferences with their interest being inclined towards cars in the affordable range. Both companies also failed in their attempt to increase the sales by offering attractive financial schemes.

Volkswagen Passat

Volkswagen Passat across the Globe will Now Posses Apollo Tyres

Apollo Tyres is the Indian-originated organization but has created good name in abroad as well, moreover now the Volkswagen had appointed it to supply tyres for Volkswagen Passat across the globe, we mean inclusive of Europe and many more advanced countries too; must say a great achievement on the part of India.

Right now the Apollo Tyres is having existence in 14 European countries whilst of ongoing efforts to reach other of them as well, this sparkling announcement came as an icing on the cake for them.

Volkswagen Passat

Back again to the Indian shores, Apollo will bestow its homeland with the new product named 4G series ranging in between sizes 12”-18”, moreover the Vredestein brand to make debut here by end of this year, which is now restricted for only being the official partner of Audi Racing Experience at Buddh International Circuit (BIC).

Very instantly, the India-bound-launch range will also include names like Sportrac 5, Ultrac Cento, inclusive of SUV tyre range namely Ultrac Sessanta and Ultra Sessanta; Tier I and Tier II cities are called to be placed on the hot targets, with prices still kept under wraps.

Creating a buzz before the launch, followed by a soft launch at BIC in June, Vredestein is expected to draw the competition against Pirelli, Bridgestone, and Michelin, and some other international brand to roll out on India-wing too.

Renault to give Passat competition in the D+ segment very soon

According to reliable sources, the French car manufacturing firm Renault is looking for an opportunity to explore the segment of premium sedan in the Indian automobile market. Currently this D+ segment is dominated by the Passat of Volkswagen brand. Renault wants to break this domination of Passat and for this Renault has already initiated the process of design, development and introduction of a car to this particular luxury segment called D+. The French car manufacturer is determined to achieve this target set by 2016. However, so far no conclusive decision has been made on the proposed D+ sedan’s overall specifications. All we know that this new car would be placed above the Laguna sedan of Renault. At the same time this new premium sedan will be made on the same lines as of the Samsung SM7 of Renault as per assumptions made by the auto experts and critics. The Renault Samsung SM7 is a luxury sedan, which is only sold in the Korean automobile market and nowhere else.

Volkswagen Passat
Once everything regarding the specifications, exterior, interior, safety feature and other minute details of this new mystery car is sorted out by the firm, it will be launched in the automobile markets of United Kingdom and Germany. Once it has collected a good volume of sales from the customers as well as the auto experts and critics, it will be in a better position to foresee the future of its success in the other international markets. With a monthly average sales of 100 to 150 units, Volkswagen Passat has a strong hold over the D+ segment of the car market in India since past more than five months now. The mystery car of Renault is to compete with BMW 3 Series and Mondeo other than Passat.

Additional best deals for the month of May 2011

We come up with the deals for the month part and now another part which is regularly being updated is the additional deals of the month coming your way. This forms the crux where we actually scout the market looking for any best deals that manufacturers may be offering in the interests of better sales. This is done mid of the month and presented to you. So, here are some of the deals that we found out.

Volkswagen Passat :

The 2011 Volkswagen Passat has won over every competition that has been thrown at it since its launch a few days back. Moreover, unlike earlier times, Volkswagen have also ensured that they do the right kind of promotion for this big German and hence were a constant sight at the IPL matches as also various other promotional functions. Visibility is the key in this game and Volkswagen have played it well. The Volkswagen Passat has not only got some unheard of features in this class but also a panache which the others lack. Though there is no discount being offered on it, dealers are offering special schemes to customers of the older Passat and Jetta, for an upgrade to the new one.

Ford Endeavour :

Solid road presence, good amount of features, go anywhere ability and also a solid pricing ensure that the Ford Endeavour remains the hot favorite for shoppers in this category. On the base 2.5 liter diesel variant, Ford Motors are offering a discount of Rs 28k while the 4×4 variant which is more expensive comes with a Rs 32k cash discount. If you crib enough, most of the dealers would be more than willing to throw in another 5k to the ring. All this translates to about 2 percent savings on the on-road price of the vehicle. Since the Endeavour doesn’t boast of having a strong resale value, the discounts help in a big way. Ohh and this is a limited period offer and so hurry up with your cheque books to the nearest Ford show rooms.

Hyundai I10 :

An upfront cash discount of Rs 5k plus free insurance worth of Rs 25k means that the 2011 Hyundai i10 is a good deal as far as small cars go. Its all new avatar has been well received by the car buying public and to sweeten the deal, Hyundai have offered the aforementioned discounts. Moreover, if you are looking to exchange your current car at the Hyundai dealership for the I10, then you stand to gain an additional Rs 15k as exchange bonus.

Fiat Punto :

Fiat Motors got back on track in India with the Punto however with the advent of competition and the Punto still not receiving any update as far as design or engines go, it is but natural that Fiat have to resort to discounts to get this product moving out of the show rooms. Free insurance worth Rs 20k is been offered as a discount across both the petrol and diesel variants.

Skoda Laura :

The very bright star from the Skoda stables, the Skoda Laura has been doing brisk business for the Czech manufacturer. However due to poor service outlets, customers were not willing to buy the Laura. However to change that image, Skoda are offering a 3 years or 45k kilometers deal for free servicing which includes some of the consumables as well. This deal is worth Rs 30k and while you may not have any cash discounts, this deal would work in the longer run.

Tata Safari :

Come some months and the new Tata Merlin nee Safari will break cover. To clear the existing stocks, Tata Motors are offering a flat cash discount of Rs 10k on all the variants of the Safari plus an additional Rs 15k bonus is available for those looking to exchange their existing car at the Tata outlet. This amounts to a total saving of Rs 25k on the Safari variants.

Volkswagen cars at the 2011 Surat Auto Expo covered by Indiandrives team

Completing the German triplet is the Volkswagen group with their range of cars. Volkswagen in India now have an enviable range than what it had a few years back. It is a known fact that two of the brands in the Surat Convention Center arena have Volkswagen as their parent company and here I am referring to Skoda and Audi. Here the participating dealer was Navjivan Autosquare Pvt Ltd which is based in Surat and two sales personnel namely Vinay Patel as also Mitesh Rohit paid heed to our press credentials. Then as they say, the going on was really smooth. Vinay Patel personally unlocked all the cars for us and the moment we sat inside, we were asked to lock the doors from inside. The reason being that he didn’t want to disappoint the waiting people outside as also didn’t want us to be distracted time and again. One safety feature in Volkswagen cars is that once the central locking is applied, individual passengers can unlock the doors if they want however people outside the car cannot unlock the doors.

The small car from Volkswagen, the Volkswagen Beetle, the cutsey bug, was the first car to be unlocked for us. No sooner had we unlocked the car, people started thronging around us wanting to have a look at the interiors and have a feel however Vinay very politely but firmly told them that they cannot get inside the car. The steptronic transmission of this car with that long gear lever is something which you usually don’t find in small hatches but then this is Volkswagen for you. Surprisingly even though I am a 6 footer, the “Bug” could accommodate my large frame. The dash though a bit bland was made of high quality materials. The large faced speedo with the inbuilt tachometer and other gauges is a novelty in itself. Storage spaces though few were well built. Surprisingly my colleague, Chetan, could make room for himself at the rear easily. Well but this bug costs Rs 25 lakhs on-road. Inspite on reservations on its boot space, it turned out to be highly spacious.

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Next up was the wonder car for Volkswagen India, the Volkswagen Vento. This was the Highline Volkswagen Vento automatic with the 1.6 liter petrol engine. There isn’t too much of a difference when viewed from ahead for the Vento and the Polo. That is strictly not only for the looks. Inside as well, the theme has been carried forward. The Vento, though, seems a bit of problem for tall drivers. Typical Volkswagen switchgear can be found in this car as also the steptronic transmission. Rear seat space however is good with an almost flat floor. The AC deserves a special mention as this cools the cabin within no time. The dual zone climatronic climate control system works fabulously. Boot space is also cavernous.

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The Volkswagen Polo was one car which I was eager to check out since this car has been widely criticized for being not so spacious at the rear. Front seat could accommodate my frame a bit more easily than what the Vento could. Strange! The Polo however doesn’t get climate control and as they say, everything is shared with the Vento to keep costs down. This one also gets a 1.6 liter engine but with manual transmission. Yes, the car displayed was the Polo 1.6. Rear seat space was something which even Chetan (being a 5ft 6 personality) chided in the Polo. Fitting me in was almost akin to me trying to get inside the rear seat of a Maruti Alto. Boot space was a bit of disappointment in this car.

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Now comes the newest baby in the Volkswagen lineup and that is the 2011 Volkswagen Passat. This model is the same as the one sold in US. However the Indian version doesn’t get the much spoken about and patented boot which actually opens when one just waves their foot underneath it, provided that the key is in the pocket. The 2011 Volkswagen Passat in India however retains most of the features from the US model and this means that we get the lane as also parallel parking system, leather seats with small fans at the sides to cool the region near the back bone, rain sensing wipers, blind spot detection and many more features. I absolutely loved that retro clock on the wood band running across the central console. The dual zone climate control system was even more quicker than the one in the Vento. Moreover the bi-xenon cornering lamps, a must feature in all the cars, are also a good addition to the list of features. I must say that the rear seats are absolutely fantastic and a real steal at this price. Boot space is also huge and can even be accessed from the rear seats. There is also a pass through which can be revealed via the rear arm rest.

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Now comes the turn of the Volkswagen Jetta, a car which brought many into the Volkswagen fold in India however then later on sales fizzled out. Vinay gave us a bit of a startling news when he said that the company is no longer manufacturing the 1.9 Tdi or either the 1.6 liter petrol. It is now only the 2.0 liter Tdi motor soldering on till the new Jetta replaces the old fleet. This one is being offered with the choice of a manual transmission now. The meter dials feel a bit retro whereas the fonts for the radio and dual zone climate control system also mirror this same theme. There is no doubt about the quality of materials used but wish that Volkswagen would have made it more enticing to look at. There are 6 air bags to protect one in the event of a crash. A 6 CD changer system takes care of entertainment duties. Boot space is huge plus there is a full size spare alloy wheel in there. Impressive enough.

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Volkswagen India to bring in the BlueMotion tech for new Passat

Volkswagen India are definitely taking their time in launching the Volkswagen Passat 2011 model in India but then as they say “Patience bears fruits” couldn’t be more apt for this car. It is now said that the company would launch the Volkswagen Passat with the company’s class leading technology namely BlueMotion technologies. This is the same technology that Mercedes has coded as BlueEfficiency and BMW calls EfficientDynamics.This essentially means that the Volkswagen Passat 2011 in India would have brake energy recuperation, start stop, gear shift indicator, light weight alloys, DSG dual clutch gear box and also many friction reducing technologies in the engine department.

In a bid to promote the new car, the company is also looking set to launch a ‘Think Blue’ campaign in India. The Passat’s earlier generation didn’t sell quite well in India due to the fact that it wasn’t marketed properly by the company. In a bid to educate the car buying public about the benefits of the BlueMotion technologies, this ‘Think Blue’ campaign is been undertaken. It is been touted that this vehicle especially the diesel with the particulate filter would have class leading fuel efficiency. This is said to be achieved by the use of extra lightweight wheels, low-friction drive shafts, longer gear ratios and super reduced rolling resistance tyres. Moreover, the CO2 emissions would also be the talking point of this car with figures of just 128g/km been floated around. We of course at Indiandrives are just so eager now after hearing this news and can’t wait to get our hands on the 2011 Volkswagen Passat for a review.

Volkswagen Passat – Latest News

The Next Level has been Reached

The new Volkswagen Passat is already here and according to engineers at Volkswagen the company did not set out to make a new car but rather their ambition was to make a new Passat. The Passat was first launched in 1973 and since then there have been approximately 15 million Passat’s sold world wide – that is right I said 15 million. This roughly translates to around 1000 Passat’s sold globally everyday since then. That is an amazing figure and speaks volumes of the way the car has been perceived and received worldwide.

It hardly comes as a surprise then the German car manufacturer was looking to revamp the Passat. Volkswagen’s philosophy dealing with the Passat is to make it more attractive to buyers of higher end cars. Volkswagen has added a host of distinctive features that will no doubt make it more up market and there are unmistakable styling cues inspired by the higher segment Phaeton. Choosing to style it based on the Phaeton is a deliberate effort to make a connection with buyers looking to emulate riding in more expensive, upper segment cars.

Although Volkswagen have intended to move the seventh generation Passat up a notch they have very much kept the value proposition the car is famous for offering. The new Passat will come with Lane Assist, which is a system that prevents the car from moving out of its lane when the driver is fatigued. It also has adjustable suspension, adaptive headlights and a new feature called Easy Open, which is something of a novelty actually. If you have your hands full of luggage or baggage and you walk towards the rear of the car, a sensor placed in the rear bumper connects with your smart key and automatically opens the boot.

There is also Park Assist offered in the new Passat, which enables the car to automatically park itself. The new Volkswagen Passat also has a Dynamic Light Assist System which uses a camera to sense the light from approaching traffic and automatically adjusts the bi-xenon headlamps. There is a more simple Light Assist option available on lower trims, which also uses a camera but only changes from high beams to low beam when facing oncoming traffic.

The fatigue detection system is calibrated in such a way to notice when the driver if tired and sounds a buzzer in the cabin to alert the driver, and the instrumentation panel also flashes a visual graphic suggesting that the driver take a break. The VW Passat will also feature a collision avoidance system that detects any object traveling at a speeds below 30 km/hr and automatically makes the car brake. Then there is also the tyre pressure monitoring system, which can detect the tyre pressure of each individual type and relays the information back to the driver alerting him if there is any problem.

Volkswagen fits the new Passat with the AG range of engines which are the TSI petrol and TDI diesel versions. For us in India, Volkswagen is likely to introduce the Volkswagen Passat Petrol with the 1.8 litre TSI Petrol engine that delivers 160 horsepower and the other one is Volkswagen Passat Diesel with 2.0 litre TDI Diesel engine that delivers 140 horsepower. Both these engines are either mated to the six-speed manual gearbox or the DSG transmission. The car also comes with stop-start technology as well as battery regeneration technology as standard.

Volkswagen hopes to release the new Passat in multiple trim levels and should offers the Trendline, Comfortline and Highline levels, although it is yet to be decided is India will see all three trims or just a single specification vehicle. The New Passat should be on sale internationally by the first month of 2011 and should hit Indian shores by April 2011. Since Volkswagen does not manufacture any of the parts for the Passat in India, localization is absent and the fully imported Passat should be available for a price between Rs 25 lakhs to 30 lakhs.

2011 Volkswagen Passat Specifications

Vehicle Category: Sedan
Engines (petrol): 1.8 L, 4 cylinder, TSI, 118 kW / 160 PS
Engines (petrol): 1.4 L, 4 cylinder, TSI, 90 kW / 122 PS
Engines (diesel): 2.0 L, 4 cylinder, TDI,  103 kW / 140 PS
Engines (diesel): 1.6 L, 4 cylinder, TDI,  77 kW / 105 PS
Drivetrain: Front engine, 5 passenger, 5-door
Transmissions (standard): 6-speed manual / six –speed DSG automatic / seven-speed DSG automatic
0-60 mph: 5.5 sec
EPA city/hwy mpg: 10.5/14.5 kmpl
Base Price: Rs. 25 – 30 lakhs (est)