Wolfsburg and the Golf – a perfect combination for 50 years. Mass production of the first model generation began at Volkswagen’s main plant in spring 1974. This Monday, the company celebrated the anniversary with a ceremony under the motto “50 years of Golf production”. The guests gathered in Hall 12 of the Wolfsburg plant included employees from Golf production along with the brand Board of Management led by CEO Thomas Schäfer, representatives from the Group Board of Management, the Chair of the General and Group Works Council Daniela Cavallo and other leading Works Council members, as well as numerous representatives from the world of politics. Minister President Stephan Weil paid tribute to the outstanding achievements of the Volkswagen workforce and the economic significance of the Golf for the State of Lower Saxony and Germany as an industrial powerhouse.

 

“The Golf is more than just a car: it’s a cult! I’m an absolute fan of the Golf and have myself been driving one for several years. For many people in Lower Saxony, the Golf is a piece of home and something they can identify with. Just like the VW Beetle was in the past, the Golf has been a symbol of mobility and freedom for decades. Since 1974, the Golf has made a significant contribution to the stability and growth of Volkswagen and industry in Lower Saxony”, Weil underlined. Prior to the ceremony, the Minister President was joined by Daniela Cavallo, Thomas Schäfer, Production Board Member Christian Vollmer and Group Chief Human Resources Officer Gunnar Kilian on a tour of Golf production. Plant Manager Rainer Fessel explained how manual tasks performed by employees to apply the underseal are supported by AI.

During the event, Volkswagen CEO Thomas Schäfer underscored the significance of the Golf for the Volkswagen brand. “The Golf is at the heart of the VW brand and has stood for affordable mobility at the highest technical level for half a century. It is the Germans’ favorite car, it has shaped a whole generation, created a new vehicle class and established itself as an international bestseller in over 70 countries with more than 37 million units sold. We love the Golf!” Schäfer said, and added that the Golf would transition to the electric future. “The electric era model will retain all the characteristics of a genuine Golf as regards design, innovation, high utility and quality.”

“50 years ago, the Golf stood for a fresh start and a new beginning as the Beetle era came to an end, today it is a symbol of continuity, reliability and innovation. As someone born in Wolfsburg, for me it is also a symbol of my home in Lower Saxony. Young or old, tradespeople, technical workers or professors – the Golf is a hit in all walks of life and unites society across generations. At the same time, our bestseller from Wolfsburg epitomizes what makes VW so successful: innovation, teamwork, passion and dedicated colleagues. Our VW family worldwide can be proud of this achievement,” said Daniela Cavallo, Chair of the General and Group Works Council of Volkswagen AG.

The ceremony that was accompanied by music from the Volkswagen Big Band focused on employees at the Wolfsburg plant. Nicola Benenati, for example, has worked in Golf production for 45 years and has therefore been involved in building all eight generations. And Roland Walter, who 40 years ago witnessed the production start of the second-generation Golf in the newly-built Hall 54, talked with Viktoria Schoke, forewoman-in-training in Hall 12, about how production has changed during the last five decades. More than half of the 37 million Golf sold worldwide in the last 50 years were produced at the brand headquarters: over 20 million in total.

Employees unveiled a very special Golf during the ceremony. Trainees presented a new Golf 8 they had decorated with a collage of employee images. This one-of-a-kind model now forms part of the plant’s internal fleet.

About the Volkswagen plant in Wolfsburg

The heart of the Volkswagen brand is located on the Mittelland Canal between Hanover and Magdeburg: the Wolfsburg plant is the headquarters of Volkswagen Passenger Cars and the world’s largest single car manufacturing complex. The plant has a workforce of some 70,000 employees. The factory halls take up a surface area of some 1.6 square kilometers. Over 48 million vehicles have been built in Wolfsburg to date – more than in any other automotive plant in the world. With a production volume of over 20 million vehicles, the Golf is the most-built model at the plant. Second place goes to the Beetle, with almost 12 million units produced in Wolfsburg between 1945 and 1975. In addition to the Golf and Golf Variant, the Touran and Tiguan are also currently built in Wolfsburg. They will be joined by the Tayron at the end of the year.

Article source: www.volkswagen-newsroom.com

The countdown for Germany’s largest motorsport event has started: the legendary ADAC 24-hour race will start at the Nürburgring on 1 June, with more than 200,000 spectators expected. This time, the event will also be a stage for the most successful European car of all time: the Golf. Volkswagen is celebrating the icon’s 50th birthday at the Nürburgring. And this celebration will be quite impressive: Volkswagen is presenting the new Golf GTI Clubsport with powerful drive and high-end sports suspension to visitors as a world premiere. The second highlight is the participation of the Golf GTI Clubsport 24h in the 24-hour race. The one-off GTI with an output of 256 kW / 348 PS will be driven by motorsport stars such as Benny Leuchter (Germany) and Johan Kristoffersson (Sweden). The starting number of the GTI race car powered by alternative fuel: the number 50, of course – a birthday gift from the organiser for half a century of the Golf success story. In addition, as a tribute to the more than 37 million Golf vehicles built to date, three classic Golf GTIs will take part in the ADAC 24h Classic race.

 

World premiere of the new Golf GTI Clubsport. This represents the start of a true GTI weekend: on Friday afternoon (31 May, 4:30 p.m.), Volkswagen will unveil the Golf GTI Clubsport, the most powerful Golf with front-wheel drive, in front of thousands of visitors and present it on the ‘Ring Boulevard’. The enhanced Golf GTI Clubsport is characterised by a completely redesigned front, which has become even more powerful and more distinct. The standard LED Plus headlights have been revamped. In addition, the Volkswagen logo at the front is illuminated for the first time. A large roof spoiler at the rear ensures maximum downforce. The LED tail light clusters have also had a makeover. The 19-inch Queenstown alloy wheels are also new. With their striking design of five oval semi-circles, they evoke the classic Detroit wheel, which was introduced for the fifth-generation Golf GTI. As a further option, the Golf GTI Clubsport can be configured with the new 19-inch Warmenau forged wheel. With a weight of only eight kilograms per wheel rim, the forged wheels reduce the unsprung masses and thus optimise performance. The functions of the Golf GTI Clubsport are coordinated via a newly developed multifunction leather sports steering wheel and a new Infotainment system. This is extremely intuitive and ensures that the driver can concentrate even better on the road ahead. In addition, the new GTI top model has the new voice assistant IDA with Chat GPT integration.

The "Special" driving profile is adapted to the Nordschleife. The performance and torque of the GTI turbocharged engineare transferred to the track via an electronically controlled front differential lock. The DCC adaptive chassis control is available as optional equipment. Another highlight of the Golf GTI Clubsport is the exclusive Special driving profile. This matches systems relevant for driving dynamics to the special track characteristics of the Nürburgring Nordschleife – in order to compensate for the undulations typical of the Nordschleife, maximum performance is achieved by means of a specific vertical setup of the DCC adaptive chassis control and a modified lateral dynamics setup of the standard Vehicle Dynamics Manager.

Motorsport becomes a test laboratory for the use of alternative fuels. The Golf GTI Clubsport 24h used by Max Kruse Racing in the 24-hour race impressively demonstrates the potential of the new Golf GTI Clubsport because the production GTI served as the development basis for the race car. The latter was built by Volkswagen Motorsport, and the car was initially transferred to Volkswagen Classic in 2021 after the end of its motorsport activities. The prototype has now been reactivated and further perfected by racing driver Benny Leuchter and his team Max Kruse Racing specifically for use on the race track also known as ‘The Green Hell’. The race car will start in the AT3 class (SP3T / class for vehicles with "alternative fuels"), as the 348 PS 2.0-litre turbocharged engine is powered by a new bioethanol fuel from technology partner Shell: the high-tech fuel E20. The extremely knock-resistant fuel enables significantly more efficient operation of the near-production GTI engine thanks to software adaptation and ensures a significantly greater reduction in CO2 emissions than the familiar bioethanol fuels E5 and E10. The E20 fuel developed at the Shell Technology Centre in Hamburg reduces CO2 emissions in the well-to-wheel balance by 35 to 40 per cent, as it contains a further 40 per cent share of renewable components from residual and waste materials in addition to the 20 per cent bioethanol content.

 

Powerful race car, strong team. The 270 km/h Golf GTI Clubsport 24h delivers first-class performance for a compact athlete. This is due firstly to its technical basis: the 1,170 kg Volkswagen has a weight-to-power ratio of 3.36 kg/PS. The turbocharged engine sends a maximum of 450 Nm of torque to the front axle. The efficient E20 fuel, of which the Golf GTI Clubsport 24h has up to 100 litres in the tank, also ensures excellent power output. The second success factor for the race is the driver team put together by Max Kruse Racing. Benny Leuchter won a class victory in the 24-hour race at the Nürburgring in 2017 driving a Golf GTI TCR. In 2019, he was also the first German to win a WTCR qualifying race – in the Golf GTI TCR at the Nürburgring. One of the best racing drivers in the world is Johan Kristoffersson, who has written motorsport history with Volkswagen as the current and six-time FIA World Rallycross Champion. The Swede was Benny Leuchter’s teammate in the WTCR and also won a Nürburgring race there with the Golf GTI TCR. This well-established team is supported by the two German Nürburgring professionals Nico Otto and Heiko Hammel. From the outside, the Golf GTI Clubsport 24h, equipped with a racing camera, attracts attention with its sophisticated aerodynamics and a special camouflage design that was previously only used on the Golf GTI Clubsport’s camouflaged production vehicles.

 

Three GTIs in the ADAC 24h Classic race. Before the main race, three first-generation classic Golf GTIs will create a fantastic atmosphere among visitors to the Eifel track at the ADAC 24h Classic. All three cars will start in the KWL Motorsport team, which is celebrating its 45th anniversary in 2024. 45 years of KWL, 50 years of Golf – a perfect double anniversary on the Nordschleife. The team from Burscheid will enter a legendary Golf GTI 16S Oettinger (Group 4) from 1981 that has an output of 208 PS. Just as legendary: a 1978 Golf GTI Kamei (Group 2) with 183 PS. The third classic model is wrapped in the GTI camouflage design (with the ‘50 years of Golf’ logo): a 1980 Golf GTI from Group 2 with an output of 184 PS.

 

Article source: www.volkswagen-newsroom.com

It is the flagship model from the all-electric ID. family and is now also top scorer in the prestigious ADAC vehicle test: the Volkswagen ID.7 has become the first ever vehicle to achieve an average score of 1.5 and thus an overall rating of ‘very good’ in the independent test performed by engineers from Europe’s largest automobile club.

 

Every year, experts from the “Allgemeiner Deutscher Automobil-Club e.V.” (ADAC) put around 100 vehicles through their paces, testing them according to more than 350 criteria in seven main categories. The ID.7 received outstanding scores in the categories of engine/drive (1.0), safety (1.1), environment/ecological test (1.2) and comfort (1.5). The electric saloon also impressed in the other main categories that contributed to the overall rating: For instance, the areas of driving characteristics (2.1), body/luggage compartment (2.3) and interior (2.4) were rated as ‘good’. Since the two categories of environment/ecological test and safety have the highest weighting, the overall score for the ID.7 was 1.5, resulting in its historical overall rating of ‘very good’.

Kai Grünitz, Member of the Board of Management responsible for Technical Development at Volkswagen brand: “We are very proud and delighted with this fantastic result. The vehicle test performed by the ADAC is extremely important and is held in very high regard in view of the organisation’s status as an independent body. In this respect, I am convinced that this rating can play a part in persuading a large number of potential customers to opt for our all-electric saloon.”

The test was conducted on a Volkswagen ID.7 Pro with an output of 210 kW (286 PS). It particularly impressed with its high energy efficiency: with a consumption of just 18.1 kWh/100 km in the combined operation part of the ADAC Ecotest, the electric saloon is one of the most economical models in the mid-sized class. It therefore received a score of 0.7 for the sub-category ‘Consumption/CO2’ and, as a result, was also awarded a full five stars in the Ecotest, which has been an integral part of the ADAC vehicle test for more than 20 years. This rating was exceeded only in the sub-category ‘Active safety – Assistance systems’, which received the best score of 0.6. And last but not least, with a starting price of 53,995 euros, the ID.7 Pro is cheaper than the previous best-rated models from competitors.

“For us, it’s great to see that safety, efficiency and comfort are not just a question of price,” says Dino Silvestro, Head of Vehicle Testing at the ADAC Technology Centre in Landsberg am Lech. “Due to our comprehensive testing methods with modern test laboratories, our vehicle test is one of the ADAC’s most comprehensive consumer protection tests and enables all test results to be compared without restriction – regardless of the vehicle class and price.”

 

Article source: www.volkswagen-newsroom.com

Volkswagen has made significant improvements to the Golf, with new infotainment system, new software, new design and new drives. Pre-sales of the most iconic vehicle in this model series are now starting: get ready for the new edition of the Golf GTI – the original of sporty compact cars. Now boasting an output of 195 kW (265 PS), the new GTI is 20 PS more powerful than its predecessor. From the outside, the car can be recognised thanks to features such as the new LED headlights and an illuminated Volkswagen logo at the front, as well as redesigned LED tail light clusters and the likewise new 19-inch Queenstown alloy wheels. Inside, the everyday athlete is equally impressive: its revamped infotainment systems are intuitively controlled by means of a visually free-standing touchscreen or by IDA, the new voice assistant with ChatGPT integration. Equipped with a seven-speed dual clutch gearbox (DSG) as standard, the Golf GTI can now be configured and ordered at prices starting from 44,505 euros.

 

GTI drive: The heart of a Golf GTI is the engine – and it has now become even more powerful. The latest evolutionary stage of its turbocharged engine delivers a maximum torque of 370 Nm to the front axle – which is combined with an electronic differential lock – starting from a very low engine speed of 1,600 rpm. This power is now available up to 4,590 rpm and thus in an even wider engine speed range. The GTI engine generates its maximum output of 195 kW / 265 PS within the engine speed range of 5,250 to 6,500 rpm. The fast-shifting seven-speed DSG ensures that the Golf GTI’s power is transferred to the drive axle with virtually no interruptions to traction during gear changes.

The gearbox can also be shifted manually using paddles on the multi-function steering wheel. The GTI reaches 100 km/h in 5.9 seconds, so the first time under six seconds. The top speed is electronically limited to 250 km/h.

GTI exterior: Volkswagen has given this iconic vehicle an even sharper look. The front has been redesigned and now sports the new LED Plus headlights. Together with the illuminated Volkswagen badge, they create a striking light design. Customers can also opt for the latest generation of the IQ.LIGHT LED matrix headlights – these offer a high-performance high beam with 15 per cent more range than the predecessor. As standard, the Golf GTI leaves the Wolfsburg factory with 17-inch Richmond alloy wheels. Other wheel rim options include the new 19-inch Queenstown3 alloy wheel. With its striking design of five oval semi-circles, this evokes the classic Detroit wheel, which was introduced for the fifth-generation Golf GTI. Other exterior modifications include the redesigned LED tail light clusters. Even without the GTI logo on the boot lid, the Golf GTI would be easily recognisable thanks to its twin-pipe exhaust system, with a chrome-plated tailpipe on both the left and right sides of the vehicle.

 

GTI interior: Inside, the Golf GTI is characterised by premium sports seats with integrated head restraints and the distinctive GTI check pattern. There is red decorative stitching on the seats, centre armrest, floor mats and multi-function steering wheel to emphasise the fact that this interior belongs to a Golf GTI.

 

An exclusive GTI feature is the Engine/Start/Stop button: after the doors are opened, this pulses red until the turbocharged engine is started. Also fitted as standard are pedal caps in brushed stainless steel, a black headliner and the enhanced Digital Cockpit Pro (digital instruments). The new infotainment systems can be operated intuitively using a free-standing touch display (diagonal: 32.8 cm/12.9 inches). Equipped as standard is the Ready 2 Discover infotainment system (navigation system available as an upgrade). The Discover system including navigation is available as optional equipment. Other new features include the control function of the illuminated touch sliders for the automatic air conditioner and volume control as well as the IDA voice assistant, which accesses the AI-based software ChatGPT to answer additional questions.

 

Articles source: www.volkswagen-newsroom.com

 

Volkswagen is putting its customers even more firmly at the center of its marketing going forward: the new YourWagen international communications initiative features examples of how Volkswagen models have always been a reliable partner in people’s lives – with emotional, playful and entertaining storytelling. The campaign kicks off in the UK market on May 4 with a 60-second advert during the “Britain’s Got Talent” broadcast on ITV. In parallel, further real-life tales, photos and videos about Volkswagen drivers and their cars will be posted on the Volkswagen UK website. There will also be multiple activations on social media channels, at retailers and at other events.

 

Susanne Franz, the VW brand’s Chief Marketing Officer, commented: “The VW brand has always built the best cars to suit any situation in life. So what could be better than to put the people who love and live our brand at the center of our campaign?”

Starting May 4, the YourWagen campaign showcases unique stories about the lives of Volkswagen owners. SurfWagen, MumsWagen or TeamWagen – each customer has their own personal YourWagen, because no two relationships with their Volkswagen are the same. The opening film is about memories of friendship and love, and of overcoming difficulties and turning hobbies into careers. It even features a film star – the legendary Herbie.

Volkswagen has established itself with innovative advertising and legendary slogans such as “Think small”, “It runs and runs …” or “Das Auto”. The YourWagen communications initiative focuses on collaborative storytelling, thus setting it apart from other campaigns: “We’ve involved our customers and fans from the very start and worked with them to create something that we feel is truly unique and collaborative,” Susanne Franz said.

Imelda Labbé, Member of the Volkswagen Brand Board of Management responsible for Sales, Marketing and After Sales, commented: “Without the Volks, there is no Wagen – that is the essence of the concept behind our YourWagen campaign. Our customers are of central importance for our brand, that is why we are placing them at the very heart of the new campaign.”

Few car manufacturers can claim a tradition that matches that of Volkswagen. For more than 70 years, the brand has been making innovative technologies, the highest quality and attractive designs accessible to many people – with the likes of bestsellers such as the Beetle, the Golf and the all-electric ID. Family. It is this human factor that makes Volkswagen so special for its fans.

Article source: www.volkswagen-newsroom.com

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