Volkswagen reaffirms its commitment to the Passat
The Passat isn't going away, the firm stressed.
Rumors claiming that Volkswagen will cancel the Passat are untrue, the company stressed. It competes in a shrinking segment of the market, but the Wolfsburg-based automaker reaffirmed its commitment to the model on both sides of the pond.
German newspaper Bild reported that Volkswagen was preparing to significantly reduce production of the European-spec Passat (pictured) or deep-six the model entirely due to waning demand. The firm doused cold water on the report as it introduced the updated version of the Passat sold in Europe.
"We've had some disappointing news regarding the Passat, so we'd like to set that straight. The press tells me the Passat will be discontinued due to changes in the automotive industry, and Volkswagen is toying with turning Emden into an EV-only plant. Let me tell you right now, we are not going to discontinue the Passat," a spokesperson said during a media event. Australian website Motoring picked up the spokesperson's comments.
The publication added that, in 2018, Volkswagen sold 53,358 examples of the Passat sedan in Europe. Wagon sales totaled 129,891, a three-percent increase over 2017.
The European-spec Passat is a completely different car than the model built and sold in the United States, but Volkswagen's American division sings a similar tune. The company introduced a heavily revised Passat at the 2019 Detroit auto show. Scott Keogh, the CEO of Volkswagen Group of America, pointed out the segment of the American market the Passat competes in remains larger than the entire German new car market by about 800,000 units. That's a strong indication that the U.S.-spec Passat isn't going anywhere, either.
"We've sold just under 30 million Passats. It's the most important family car and compact executive car in the world," the spokesperson added.