The Chinese market has been proved to be one of Volkswagen’s strongest lately, and the automaker hopes the trend will keep going up.
Even if Volkswagen’s China deliveries fell 3.4 percent last year to 3.5 million units, the two previous quarters were quite solid and helped the company offset on some extent the global downward sales trend triggered by the diesel scandal. As an example, the Group’s core brand posted a 6.5 percent rise in China from January to March this year, while the results on other major markets were almost all negative. The automaker currently has two joint ventures in China and intends to keep its investment strategy for the coming years, by spending around 4 billion euros (4.46 billion dollars) annually to expand its range, particularly the SUV range. Volkswagen does not produce many SUVs in China, but it plans to launch ten locally made VW-, Audi- and Skoda-badged such models in the coming years.
“There is an SUV offensive on the way,” Jochem Heizmann, the head of the German automaker’s China branch, said ahead of the start of the Beijing auto show. “It will begin this year with a B segment SUV,” he added, without giving further details. However, Heizmann revealed in February that Volkswagen is in talks with the small local maker JAC Motors for a potential partnership, but he did not want to say at that time what type of vehicles could be produced as a result of an upcoming cooperation. As for the emissions scandal, there are around 2,000 VW cars affected in China and Heizmann said the company was prepared for any recalls in the country related to the cheating device.