is Not normal, even less, to talk about a product of Volkswagen, using terms such as error, or failure. But definitely the Volkswagen Phaeton is anything but a conventional product, the classic best-seller in its category that Volkswagen tends to create. Be that as it may, the Volkswagen Phaeton has not fulfilled the expectations that had been placed in a model, so to speak, allowed Volkswagen to take out the feet of clay, advocate for a product that is more centered in the image, in the volume, but at the same time risking entering a category in which the German mark theoretically had experience. The proper analysis of these errors will depend on the success of its successor, which is already cooking on Wolfsburg to reach dealerships in the next few years.
Still having foreseen a production of at least 20,000 units per year, the Volkswagen Phaeton only managed to sell 84.253 units in 15 years of commercialization.
1. The figures that were not fulfilled.
Volkswagen had planned to have in their brand-new, factory glazed in Dresden with a production capacity of 20,000 units each year, with the possibility of increasing the production up to 35,000 units, and even on the 50,000. In 15 years of production, only built 84.253 units. Today, with the cessation of the Volkswagen Phaeton, the factory “clear” of Volkswagen in Dresden has closed its assembly lines for being transformed into a center that Volkswagen will present its strategy for the electrification and digitalization for the next few years.
2. A bad interpretation of the attractiveness of a prototype and its possible commercial success.
it All began in 1999, when Volkswagen presented at the iaa in Frankfurt as a prototype, Volkswagen Concept D, anticipating the traits of what would be a luxury sedan. That prototype with the V10 engine would see it as one of its most notable features, a design behind with tailgate, would be replaced by a design of sedan of three bodies, with overhang and trunk lid conventional, following in the tradition of the luxury saloon car. The favorable reactions that led to Ferdinand Piëch to give the green light to the project ever were to be fulfilled according to their business results.
3. One of the biggest fiascoes in the history, with millions of dollars in losses.
it Is estimated that Volkswagen would have invested 2,000 million euros in the Volkswagen Phaeton, an estimation that would have led to Automotive News two years ago to assume some losses estimated at around 28.101 euros for each Volkswagen Phaeton sold. That is a huge failure for a brand like Volkswagen, that if something presumes it is precisely the substantial profit margins that leave their products.
4. there’s no place for megalomania.
to a certain extent the Volkswagen Phaeton is a project megalomaniac. Volkswagen could have used the infrastructure of the group to produce the Phaeton, but in its place rose the Gläserne Manufaktur, a factory located in Dresden created by and for the production of the Phaeton. And that was not a factory either, but a huge glass building that was meant to represent the transparency of the brand with their customers, taking advantage of the metaphor of the absence of opaque walls that allowed you to see how it produced the Phaeton from the outside.
The Volkswagen Phaeton would be even with engines that today would be difficult to understand in a sedan of the brand, engines as a W12 6.0-liter gasoline and a diesel V10 5.0-liter.
it is Not surprising that for his successor at Volkswagen have thought of an alternative much more logical in these days running, the electric motor and batteries of great capacity, a strategy to face up to the Tesla Model S.
5. A deployment of unprecedented resources.
Perhaps the error was precisely in thinking that Volkswagen could develop and manufacture on their own a product of great luxury, no delegate of the group’s brands with more tradition in such company, and with an image that might justify their price, like Audi, or Bentley. Evil tongues say that Ferdinand Piëch gave the engineers a list of requirements of quality extraordinary, as the fact that the Phaeton should be able to move continuously at 300 km/h with an outside temperature of 50 ° C maintaining an internal temperature of 22 ° C, regardless of its maximum speed was electronically limited to 250 km/h. The Volkswagen Phaeton has accumulated more than 100 patents new Volkswagen.