VW plots crossover to battle Subaru
Volkswagen is considering a crossover version of the future Jetta SportWagen that would be similar to the Alltrack concept unveiled at the New York auto show last month.
"We think there is definite sales potential in North America and other world markets for a new lifestyle-targeted Jetta model," said a senior VW source in Germany. "It could be based on the successor to [the] existing model."
The vehicle under discussion is meant to battle the Subaru Outback. It rides high and has uniquely styled bumpers and graphics, additional wheel-arch cladding and special interior trims.
To keep development costs down, the wagon and the crossover would share a steel body and mechanical package. The crossover, which likely would get the name Jetta Alltrack for the United States, was conceived to offer the choice of either standard front-wheel drive or optional all-wheel drive. The vehicle could be sold in other markets, including Europe, as the Golf Alltrack.
With the next-generation Tiguan due in 2014 -- it gets bigger and has an optional third row of seats -- Volkswagen clearly sees room at the lower end of its lineup for another crossover.
The Jetta crossover would be assembled in Mexico alongside future incarnations of the existing Jetta sedan and SportWagen and the upcoming Jetta four-door-style coupe.
All four would be based on Volkswagen's new modular platform structure. Four-cylinder direct-injection gasoline and diesel engines for the Jetta models would be sourced from Mexico.
You can reach Greg Kable at firstname.lastname@example.org.