The 2011 Geneva Auto Show may bring some big surprises from the Volkswagen Group. While the company has long used the venue to roll out new production cars, this year’s show will likely host several VW-crafted vehicles that may or may not ever reach an assembly line..
VW group design chief Walter de’Silva told Automotive News Europe about the unveiling of up to seven new concepts at next month’s show. It is likely that two will be Volkswagen-branded vehicles, while the remainder will be divided between VW’s other brands. Seat and Skoda will each have a show car, and Audi is likely to show two new concepts. That’s a total of six different cars, meaning another could be in the mix, potentially from Lamborghini, Porsche, Bentley, or Bugatti.
When it comes to VW’s wares, we can only make educated guesses as to what will roll onto the show stand. Last year, VW showed production cars, including new Polo models and the midsized Amarok truck. In 2009, the company showcased its Bluemotion environmental initiative by displaying several different takes on improving fuel economy and cutting emissions.
Lately, rumors have been stirring about a new mid-engined roadster from VW that might share a platform with a future Porsche car. Newly appointed VW of America President Jonathan Browning has also said he is interested in the idea of a new Microbus. We also know that Volkswagen is pushing ahead at full speed with alternative fuel and electric vehicles. Any of these are possibilities — but we’ll sadly have to play the waiting game until March (or shortly beforehand) to see for ourselves.
We don’t know exactly what will turn up, but we do know is VW has allocated roughly $71 billion for new product development, and to boost global production capacity by 2015. Most of the media have been anxious to see what new products will help VW reach its lofty goal of becoming the world’s largest automaker — we wouldn’t be surprised if what arrives in Switzerland may serve as a sneak peak to the company’s future plans.
Source: Automotive News Europe (Subscription required)