The top stories from Automotive News Europes March 13, 2000, issue – and how they developed.
Toyota gets diesel boost
Toyota hopes to boost sales by offering diesel versions of its face-lifted RAV4. The medium SUV gets its first diesel, a 2.0-liter common-rail engine, starting in autumn to help meet Europeans growing demand for the diesel powertrains.
The RAV4 was Europes top selling medium SUV in 2003 and 2004. Last year Toyota sold 109,059 RAV4s, 54,939 of those were powered by the 2.0-liter diesel. In 2003, Toyota sold 105,076 RAV4s, 56,729 were diesel models.
Ford vs. VW
Ford Europe and Volkswagen had agreed not to show their large minivans, which are built on the same platform at VWs Autoeuropa plant in Setubal, Portugal, at the Geneva auto show. But that promise was broken. When Ford decided to launch it Galaxy in Switzerland VW responded by getting its Sharan ready for a Geneva launch just two working days before the show opened.
Production of the Galaxy at Autoeuropa will end in March 2006, when Ford replaces it with a new model that will be built by Ford in Genk, Belgium. VW has not made a decision on the future of the Sharan or the third large minivan built at the plant, the Seat Alhambra.