The Volkswagen Group expanded its model range considerably in 2008 to include well over 170 passenger and commercial vehicle models in all key segments: from small cars to super sports cars in the passenger car sector, and from small pick-ups to heavy trucks in the commercial vehicles sector. We will successively move into open market segments that offer profitable opportunities for us. The number of vehicles in Germany that emit less than 140 g/km CO2 was increased to 91 in fiscal year 2008.
The Volkswagen Passenger Cars brand launched a new edition of the Golf, its most important volume model. The sleek design, perfect workmanship and excellent quality of the new Golf are again setting standards in the compact class. In addition, the brand expanded its range by adding two particularly emotional vehicles, the Passat CC and the Scirocco. The Passat CC, a dynamic four-door coupé, stands out on the strength of its unique design. The Scirocco is a true sports coupé featuring state-of-the-art technologies. In the key US market, Volkswagen began the planned rollout of new models with the Routan MPV. In China, the Lavida and New Bora volume models were both launched successfully. These cars perfectly fit Chinese demand for compact, inexpensive saloon cars. The most important model in Brazil, the Gol, was completely reengineered in 2008 and thus continued to defend its top market position. The market launch of the Voyage also supplemented the model range by a vehicle in the key A0 notchback segment in Brazil.
The Audi brand expanded its product range by adding the Audi A3 Cabriolet and Audi Q5 models, thereby forging ahead in high-growth segments. The Audi A3 Cabriolet is a compact convertible that offers maximum open-air driving enjoyment and has stylish lines whether the classic fabric top is up or down. The new Audi Q5 is a sports car in the SUV segment that combines strong performance with efficient fuel consumption. Moreover, Audi has expanded its model range to include attractive derivatives: the Avant version of the new A4 series was introduced, and the Audi RS6 models extend the successful Audi A6 product family.
In 2008, Škoda set new trends with the successor to the Superb in a hatchback version with a hinged Twindoor tailgate system. The new concept of the Czech brand’s flagship model offers added comfort and utility and thus is aimed in particular at comfort-focused customers in Europe. This car is also available in an environmentally friendly GreenLine version*.
The SEAT brand fundamentally redesigned its key model in the subcompact segment, the Ibiza. The Ibiza series holds its own in Europe’s largest market segment as an especially sporty and well-designed model. The number of cars sold exceeded the previous year’s figure.
The luxury Lamborghini, Bentley and Bugatti brands developed fascinating new derivatives and editions based on well-known models and successfully launched these cars in 2008.
Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles showcased appealing new versions of its successful series: the sporty Caddy Life Style, the environmentally friendly Caddy BlueMotion*, the leisure-focused Caddy Tramper and the Caddy 4Motion* all-wheel-drive version.
Scania launched its new Euro 5 engine platform in the market in 2008. These engines feature both EGR (exhaust gas recirculation) and SCR (selective catalytic reduction) to accommodate all types of customer demand and market conditions. The new engines are the first in the industry to meet the tough Euro 5 emission standard without the need for exhaust gas aftertreatment and additives, making them more efficient and environmentally friendly to use.
In 2008, Volkswagen Financial Services AG continued to develop its successful mobility packages, thereby helping to supplement the innovative range of products offered by the Group.