VW: U.S. may get Scirocco after all

The Scirocco went on sale in Europe in August after a 16-year hiatus for the name. VW is considering a limited edition of the car for the United States.
WOLFSBURG, Germany — Volkswagen AG may bring its resurrected Scirocco sport coupe to the United States after all.

In March, VW said it would not sell the Scirocco in the United States for fear it would take sales from the Golf GTI. The strong euro, which makes vehicles produced in Europe more expensive in the United States, also was a factor.

But prodding from enthusiasts and the Scirocco's popularity in Europe, where it returned in August after a 16-year-hiatus, has VW executives rethinking that decision, said Steve Keyes, a spokesman for Volkswagen Group of America Inc. The dollar's gain on the euro also doesn't hurt.

Keyes said VW is considering selling a limited edition of the Scirocco in the United States that would have more horsepower and a higher price tag than the GTI.

"People are looking at: 'Would it make sense? What are the volumes?' and all that," Keyes told Automotive News at a press event here last week. "There's no real decision yet, but we're now discussing whether maybe there's another way to bring a Scirocco here, positioning it a little bit differently."

VW has sold limited-edition vehicles in the United States before. In 2004, the automaker introduced a high-performance, all-wheel-drive variant of the Golf, known as the R32, that sold in the United States for one year. The R32 gave a U.S. encore in 2007 after the redesign of its European counterpart. In 2007, 1,756 R32s were sold in the United States.

"That's the model we've chosen to take a look at for a special Scirocco," Keyes said. "We've got some experience with that type of idea, and it's been successful, so it would seem to make some sense to replicate that with the Scirocco."

A decision on the Scirocco has no timetable, Keyes said. VW builds the coupe at its factory in Setubal, Portugal, where it also makes the Eos. 

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