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Archive for March, 2015

VW pickups

It looks like Volkswagen might be getting back into the work vehicle market in the US, if the Bloomberg report is correct. VW’s Type 2 vans the Microbus and Vanagon have been popular in the US market. However Volkswagen is now looking to bring back their work vans and pickups to attract more American customers to their showrooms.

In the US the only VW utility vehicles is the Tiguan (compact SUV) and the Touareg (luxury midsize SUV). Neither of them is suitable for heavy use, as they are both 5-seater SUVs with limited cargo space. Volkswagen is taking a hit in US sales since the vehicle market in the US is passionate about trucks and pickups. VW is aware that it needs to expand its portfolio to the US market and to next generation of Tiguan with its optional 7 seats. The new 3-row crossover is currently being built in Tennessee, but the Tiguan itself likely won’t be enough to boost sales.

The Amarok would be a logical choice for VW to bring to the US market. Its direct competition would be the Chevrolet Colorado and the GMC Canyon, due to their rugged design and diesel motor option. Another option for Volkswagen to consider, is to expand its US market to include the T5, Crafter and Caddy vans. In Europe, those vans are available as passenger vehicles. Volkswagen could revitalize the minivan market in the US with a bit of European style.

Since the Mercedes-Benz Metris midsize van is VWs direct competition in Europe, they will be taking a close look at the Metris’ sales in the US. If the Metris is successful in the US, VW might be inspired to expand that market segment here.

It might a safe bet to assume that some version of the Amarok or Caddy will be hitting the US market in a few years. The Amarok TDI would hold its own against the likes of the Colorado and Canyon Duramax. The compact Caddy van could do some damage to Ram’s Promaster City and Ford’s Transit Connect sales, especially in areas where VW has more cachet.

Even though the VW passenger vehicles do good sales in the truck friendly US, their lack of vehicles in the pickup and light truck areas will have an impact on VW’s bottom line. We will find out in the near future if the Amarok or a similar version makes it across the pond.

To find out more about the Volkswagen lineup visit Chapman VW in Tucson.

volkswagen-sport-coupe-concept-gte-interior

Dr Heinz-Jakob Neusser, Volkswagen Brand Board Member for Development, introduces the car that needs no introduction: “This breathtakingly dynamic coupé is unlike any other to appear in this class. The design of the Sport Coupé Concept GTE is an impressive alternative to the classic sedans of the B and C segments-it has the style of a sport coupé that is enriched by the functionality of a large hatchback and the interior space of a sedan.” Klaus Bischoff, Head of Design of the Volkswagen Brand, adds: “The Sport Coupé Concept GTE is another milestone of expressive design. With this concept car, Volkswagen is not only showing a new model’s design, but also initial glimpses of a new design era.”

The innovative interior of the Sport Coupé Concept GTE is as instantly striking as its exterior. It’s highly, clean, crisp design immediately jumps out at you. It offers a peek into the new world of luxury, peerless ergonomics and bridges the gap between human and machine interactive interface.   This Volkswagen coupe takes things to the next level by using driver’s biometric data and a new Active Information Display with a surreal 3D appearance. There are no let downs as you venture inside. The amazing end result is a ground-breaking vanguard interior to match its stunningly expressive exterior beauty.

In a new age, nothing screams innovation more than the GTE’s plug-in hybrid drive system. The range of the all-electric mode checks in at approximately 32 miles.

The Sport Coupé Concept GTE factors in a new dimension to its GTE philosophy. The 374-horsepower GTE fastback rivals the long-distance properties of a Gran Turismo, while at the same time delivering zero-emission driving. The VW Sport Coupe Concept does this with two electric motors and externally charged battery. The ground-breaking vehicle tops out at 155 mph and has a remarkable combined fuel consumption of 118 mpg.
Exterior Design

The innovative vehicle is underpinned again by Volkswagen’s modular transverse matrix (MQB), which presents stylish packaging and proportions. The most important dimension for the design of a sports coupe is the ratio of the exterior length to the wheelbase. The GTE is 191.7 inches long with an incredibly long wheelbase of 118.9 inches, serving an interior that is 73.7 inches long. The interior includes short body overhangs of 35.8 inches at the front and 44.1 inches at the back. Its low height (55.4 inches), impressive width (73.4 inches) and large 21-inch wheels give the car a spectacular stance. As a result of the MQB packaging, the Sport Coupé GTE has ample front and rear headroom, and a 17.0 cubic foot trunk.
Highlights

The radiator grille and headlights are a complete departure from standard VW front ends. The designers are believed to have focused significantly on the 3D factor. The uppermost radiator grille features crosspiece frames with inner LED modules (high beams and Daytime Running Lights). The second crosspiece wraps around the outer LED modules (low beams and DRLs).

The winglets also function as DRLs and turn signals by alternating the LED color at the top ends of the bands.

The GTE is a coupé with four doors and a hatchback. This approach led to a design that accentuates long, extended lines, a low overall height, and an athletic body form. The car’s silhouette is completely uncompromised with the roofline assuming the shape of a flattened curve that extends from the A-pillar-set. The extremely low-set C-pillar, which flows seamlessly from the roofline, gives the impression of dominating the vehicle’s rear. Air vents in the front fenders and hood have stylish chrome elements that mimic the stylistic theme of the winglets surrounding the headlights.

Learn more about Volkswagen’s new Sport Coupe Concept GTE vehicle at Chapman Volkswagen. Don’t forget to also check out other models from Volkswagen in Tucson and take one for a test drive!

volkswagen-passat-gte-plug-in

The 2014 Paris Motor Show highlighted many vehicles with fuel saving technologies. Among them was the plug in hybrid version of the 8th generation Passat GTE with impressive fuel economy figures of 141mpg (2.0L/100km).

The Passat GTE is a blend of hybrid electric power (E) and the sporty GTi feel resulting in the GTE name. It is powered by a turbocharged petrol engine and an electric motor that has a range of 31 miles (50km) in zero emission mode, but can get the extra boost from the petrol engine when needed. The driver can easily switch between petrol power and electric power by pressing the “E-Mode” button next to the gearshift. While in GTE mode the 1.4-liter TSI with a 154hp (115kW) output gets an extra boot from the electric motor of 114hp (85kW) and 330Nm of torque, giving the Passat GTE a total output of 215hp (160kW) and 295 ft-lb (400Nm) of torque.

In the GTE mode, the Passat will do the 0 to 62 mph (100km/h) in 8.0 seconds and the car’s steering and throttle response are automatically sharpened at higher speeds. The top speed in the GTE mode is 136 mph (219 km/h).

The GTE hybrid has a range of 620 miles on a 50-liter tank of fuel and when combined with the 141mpg (2.0 l/100km) electric motor, the CO2 output is only 45 g/km. The Passat GTE has a special DSG gearbox that allows the car to “coast” without getting power from the engine or battery, which helps to dramatically improve fuel efficiency numbers.

The styling on the Passat GTE has been updated to make it stand out from other cars in the Passat line. At the front, the hybrid has a chrome grille, cross panels on the lower air intake on the bumper and the daytime C-shaped LED running lights. The 17” wheels are also another feature that makes the hybrid Passat stand out from the other models.

Charging takes place via a socket in new grille of the GTE and takes 4.25 hours minutes to get a full charge from the wall plug. VW has an optional quick charger with 3.6kW that fully charges in 2.5 hours. On the go, the GTE uses regenerative braking to keep the battery charged.

The interior of the VW Passat GET had been fine-tuned to accommodate the new drivetrain. The car’s 6.5 touchscreen infotainment display now indicates how far you can go on the car’s current charge, how much energy you are using and which energy consuming functions you can turn off to save even more battery life.

The 2015 VW Passat GTE will be available in the UK in October 2105. Contact Chapman Volkswagen to find out when they will be available in the US.

To find out more about the latest models of VW Passats or test drive one, visit Tucson Volkswagen.

VW-Sport-Coupe-Concept-GTE

Recently Volkswagen displayed the new VW Sport Coupé Concept GTE at the Geneva Motor Show and is reported to be replacing the current VW CC. The 4-door coupé is the beginning of a new design era at Volkswagen.

The drive system of the concept GTE is powered via a plug-in hybrid drive system that is sporty while being economical. A turbocharged 3.0-litre TSI V6 direct-injection engine that produces 295 hp (220 kW) and 369 lb-ft of torque, powers the Sport Coupe. A lithium-ion battery located in the centre tunnel, along with 2 electric motors, powers the electrical part of the drive system. The front motor with 54 hp (40 kW) is integrated into the 6-speed DSG automatic dual-clutch transmission. The rear motor produces 114 hp (85kW) that power the rear wheels. The combined system produces 374 hp (279 kW).

Power can be distributed to all 4 wheels as needed with the help of the rear electric motor and that drives an electric drive shaft. In sporty mode, the GTE can go from 0 to 62 mph in 5.0 seconds and has a top speed of 155 mph. Even with this performance, the GTE has a combined fuel consumption of 118 mpg. For shorter trips less than 32 miles, the Sport Coupé Concept GTE can be driven on electricity only with zero emissions. One tank of gas can give you a range of over 745 miles.

The interior four-seat cabin is full of digital displays and highlights simple clean design and unrivaled ergonomics. Instead of the regular cluster of instruments, a 12.3-inch unit displays speed, power and other important info. In the center stack is a 10.1-inch infotainment system. Each passenger in the back seat has access to a 12.3 inch displays at the rear of the front seats and there is one 10.1 inch display at the rear of the centre console. The navigation system can determine which route to take by sensing the driver’s mood via a smart watch.

At the front end, the headlights, radiator grille and the VW logo combine to for a brand new design for the VWs front end and is 3D is appearance. Towards the outmost ends, the radiator grille frames the LED twin headlights, which are framed by an aluminum radiator grille crosspiece, whose tips turn upwards, similar to the winglets of the latest jet planes. This shape is a common design theme that is repeated on the exterior and interior.

The topmost radiator grille crosspiece borders the internal LED components (high beams and Daytime Running Lights (DRL)); the second crosspiece frames the exterior LED components (low beams and DRLs). The winglets functions as both DRLs and trun signals. The final design touch of the Sport Coupé Concept GTE’s DLR is what has become the identifying signature of VWs electric and hybrid models, the C shaped LEDs that surround the lower air intakes.

Visit Chapman VW in Tucson to find out more about the new VW Coupe GTE.

VWTouran_family

Volkswagen is a car manufacturer known to provide a multitude of options when it comes to family cars. However with the new VW Touran MPV, Volkswagen wants to take the experience to the next level. The brand new 2015 model Touran has a beautiful design but the best feature of the vehicle, is the ability to host up to 7 passengers. While it does have a gargantuan size compared to other VW family sedan models, the Touran does provide some interesting add-ons such as a continuous glass surface.

At first glance the VW Touran appears sporty, with modern curves and an aerodynamic front end. The reality is that the Volkswagen Touran is a rather adaptable vehicle that can either be a daily family car or traveling companion. The mini MPV offers two extra seats in the rear that increases the number of passengers from 5 to 7. Another family-frienly feature includes a professional belt recognition system, which allows the driver to double check fastened seatbelts. Due to an accommodating size, the Volkswagen Touran mini MPV offers a good amount of legroom and a multitude of interior functions.

An exclusive model feature is the ability for drivers to secure luggage with an elasticated belt. Drivers also have the opportunity to open the back trunk quickly and effortlessly, via an easy open hatch function. In order to open the truck, the driver must move one of their feet underneath the rear of the car, press a button and the hatch will open automatically.

The new Volkswagen Touran integrates an optional Composition Touch radio for music lovers. As part of the navigation system, the Composition Touch allows passengers to customize their own music list. The tuning can easily be changed and customized according to a family member’s individual tastes.

Alongside the Composition Touch feature, the Volkswagen Touran includes another optional device known as the Car-Net App Connect. The Car-Net App Connect allows the user to access a complete set of networking apps that allows them to exchange and share data from their car to their smartphone. The Car-Net device, alongside a newly advanced navigation system, is a very impressive feature and perhaps even necessary when for long family road trips.

Integrating the Volkswagen Touran with data and media sharing capability is a great decision towards future design. It’s relieving to see how this car offers a lot of unique functions specific to a family, no matter how many members. The ability to keep your family safe, secure and still able to have fun on the road indicates how well designed the Volkswagen Touran really is.

At Chapman VW Tucson, we think driving the Volkswagen Touran is a delight! The reasonable starting price for the Touran is just icing on the cake. This is great time to upgrade your family car to a great looking, reliable vehicle such as the 2015 Volkswagen Touran. Check out our new Volkswagen inventory today!