It’s been a turbulent year for wagons, with BMW jumping out and Acura and Cadillac jumping in. Long-time wagon builder Volkswagen will be losing the Passat wagon when the Passat leaves our shores, but today we’re hearing they could replace it with a CC Wagon.
While details surrounding Volkswagen product planning are muddy at best, the situation would appear to be as follows: Though a new Passat is expected at the Paris Motor Show, it won’t come to America. We’ll instead get the mysterious New Midsize Sedan, which won’t have a wagon variant. That leaves the Jetta SportWagen as the only wagon from VW, or does it? Rumors out of Europe are now suggesting that a wagon version of the upscale Volkswagen CC could be in the works and could turn up in the U.S. Volkswagen’s board will reportedly vote on such a vehicle in September.
This begs the question of whether or not VW should move ahead with such a plan in the U.S. As noted above, the wagon segment isn’t for the faint of heart, and there’s fresh competition now from Acura’s TSX Sport Wagon and the Cadillac CTS Sport Wagon. Though not the highest-selling models in VW’s lineup, the wagons have actually had a very strong year in 2010 with Jetta SportWagen sales up 72 percent and Passat Wagon sales up 13.5 percent. Still, SportWagen sales account for only one sixth of Jetta sales with 5554 sales this year and Wagon sales make up only a quarter of Passat sales with only 1018 sales so far in 2010. CC sales, meanwhile, are up 23 percent this year to 8290, outselling the Passat sedan and Wagon combined by 3000 units.
Were a CC Wagon built, it would stack up favorably in the segment. The Acura TSX Sport Wagon and Audi A4 Avant offer only four-cylinder engines, so Volkswagen has an opportunity to top both of them by pairing its narrow-angle V-6 with the new Wagon variant. Offering 4Motion all-wheel drive would give it a further leg up on the Audi, which sells about 4000 units per year on average. However, only a four-cylinder model could compete with Acura on price, as adding a V-6 and all-wheel drive launches the CC sedan past the A4 Avant and well into Cadillac CTS Sport Wagon territory, where it would be at a disadvantage to the Cadillac’s more-powerful engines and rear- or all-wheel drive. A four-cylinder model would be right on-par with the competition, where it could struggle to out-luxury the Audi.
What do you think? Should Volkswagen bring a wagon version of the CC to America to replace the Passat Wagon? Or will it end up a slow-seller like the Passat Wagon? Tell us what you think in the comments below.