• Same mistake twice? VW Phaeton coming back to the USA, intended to be Volkswagen 'halo' car

    The VW Phaeton was a failure. The idea was to bring the Volkswagen brand upmarket but that created sibling rivalry with Audi and as it turns out people would rather have an Audi than a premium Volkswagen. Sales fell well short of expectations which when a VW is priced like an Audi A8 and sharing the same drivetrain it should be obvious to everyone involved that people would rather go for the brand that is already positioned as offering premium models and not the one trying to make inroads into the segment.


    Volkswagen and Audi have a clear distinction and this experiment already failed once so why is Volkswagen doing it again? Volkswagen makes a ton of money everywhere except the United States. Sure, VW's sell here, just not like they do in Germany, Europe, or the rest of the world. This is going to be VW's halo car in the United States.

    CEO Martin Winterkorn stated the following, "A brand as large as Volkswagen needs a halo project in the upscale segment. We've seen what happens to brands that don't have that kind of project."

    Volkswagen sales are down in the United States and shrinking. Will another Phaeton change this? Don't small, fun, affordable cars like the Volkswagen Up Buggy make more sense for increasing sales volume and perception? It certainly is more logical than cannibalizing Audi A8 sales.

    Expect to see the new Phaeton on display at the Detroit Auto Show. VW is going to do what it is going to do and they have money to burn so let's watch them burn it. Again.

    Source
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Same mistake twice? VW Phaeton coming back to the USA, intended to be Volkswagen 'halo' car started by Sticky View original post
    Comments 6 Comments
    1. Flinchy's Avatar
      Flinchy -
      it's not like it costs them as much as it otherwise would

      it's exactly the same as an A8 for the most part, with a different shell

      so it's not an entirely tragic mistake?
    1. chrisisnapping's Avatar
      chrisisnapping -
      It's a mistake. I love my Vdub, but who the $#@! is going to pay 65k for one?

      This car needs to baseline at 50k and have an AMAZING service offer to have a chance.

      They would sell more bringing better diesels or a slightly smaller Jetta 2dr only that starts at $14k that comes with an auto and an iPhone hook up (base) with a great crash test rating so they can target the $#@! out of new female drivers.
    1. Brey335i's Avatar
      Brey335i -
      Sometimes I think there's a lot of internal di*k measuring going on at VW. This is a prime example of one part of the company trying to fill a market that another is already entrenched in.

      I don't see anyone buying this who would have otherwise bought a BMW or Merc... so you're just stealing Audi sales. Idiotic idea. VW doesn't need a halo car costing over 60K. Toyota doesn't build Lexus competitors, Honda doesn't try to step on Acura. It's gonna end up just like the previous Phaeton.

      At the end of the day, a VW is a good buy up to $40K but after that I'd be looking at something more upscale.
    1. Sticky's Avatar
      Sticky -
      Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Brey335i Click here to enlarge
      This is a prime example of one part of the company trying to fill a market that another is already entrenched in.
      Exactly. If someone wants a sedan like this from VW... you go to Audi.

      VW should be producing a halo car in the sense of something affordable, fun, and sporty.
    1. Sticky's Avatar
      Sticky -
      Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Flinchy Click here to enlarge
      it's not like it costs them as much as it otherwise would

      it's exactly the same as an A8 for the most part, with a different shell

      so it's not an entirely tragic mistake?
      They can piss away money so who cares really but it already didn't work once...
    1. andrew20195's Avatar
      andrew20195 -
      The most ridiculous thing is that in the last model change, they've been moving to cheaper cars, as the previous gen was getting significantly more expensive than competitors. So it makes even less sense now than it did the first time they made the Phaeton.

      The first one was Pich's baby. If he's the one behind this relaunch, and it fails, well... according to Pich, all it takes for an executive to get fired is, "to make the same mistake twice"