Volkswagen plans coupe SUV onslaught

Volkswagen chairman of the board, Dr Heinz-Jakob Neusser, has confirmed an SUV product onslaught over the next few years, including a pair of coupe models inspired by the BMW X6 and Mercedes GLE.

Speaking at the New York Motor Show this week, Neusser said we can expect a variety of new models before the end of the decade – from a full-size coupe SUV, right down to a budget sub-brand 4×4 designed to rival cars from Dacia and Suzuki.

When asked if there was an opportunity for the expansion of new Alltrack models, he hinted that this was certainly possible, but insisted the priority was with conventional SUVs.

VW T-ROC concept 2014 driving

“We can do this, clearly. But to be honest, the first priority is a mid-sized SUV, second the Tiguan, then the T-ROC – the Golf SUV.”

This is the first confirmation we’ve had of a Golf-sized SUV since the T-ROC made its debut at the Geneva Motor Show in 2014. Neusser couldn’t give us a concrete name or estimated release date, but insisted a product like was definitely in the pipline.

“We do it job by job. Otherwise it’s too complex to explain to the customer. You can’t do everything in parallel, you must be clear on what you are doing – and the clear plan was to cover each class with an SUV.”

However, once each base is covered – likely in the next five years –  the brand will push on with its coupe SUV blitz.

“The main task is to have an SUV in each segment. Once this is done, we’re thinking about coupe derivatives on the mid-sized SUV and on the Tiguan.

Volkswagen CrossBlue Coupe front tracking

“The T-ROC is a bit coupe-styled so it makes no sense to make an additional coupe because it’s already a trendy, emotional thing. The same is true of a Polo-based version – that will come directly as more dynamic.”

This hints at a similar product strategy to Suzuki, whereby Volkswagen will have two models in each segment – one aimed at rational, practical-minded buyers and another (the coupes in this case) targeted at more fashionable, more emotional drivers. 

But that’s not all. Volkswagen also has its eye on a low-cost budget platform, which will spawn both saloon and SUV models. Especially key for the Chinese market, Neusser wouldn’t rule out the possibility of Volkswagen taking fight to Dacia in Europe in the coming years.

“This budget car needs to take care of two bodystyles. It needs to take care of a sedan and an SUV bodystyle. We are now working on a budget platform, which allows us to combine these two bodystyles with a lot of common parts.”

Take a look at our round-up of the best SUVs to buy now…

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