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Old May 6, 2004, 02:50 PM   #1
bousozoku
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My VW Visit

While I was having my car serviced today, I took some time to take a few photos and thought to post a few.

I don't know what design the VW dealership buildings use where you are, but they've gone with something much bigger and almost museum-like within the past two years.

The Phaeton was priced well, for, ummm, someone. The "gas guzzler tax" looks more like a down payment for a car. From the rear, it doesn't look much like a VW at all, but has traces of just about everything else.

The R32 was much more to my liking at about 33 percent the price of the Phaeton.
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Old May 6, 2004, 04:03 PM   #2
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The VW dealership near me went through a complete overhaul in 2002-03. The front now has that same yellow/white scheme as in your picture... My Jetta's been good to me since I got it in '01 so I haven't been to the shop recently...but I doubt I would see any Phaeton's up here. The weather tends to trash cars quickly. I read in the WSJ that the Phaeton has been doing miserably, along with the revamped (and pricey) Golf. It seems odd that they would change such a good (and CHEAP) thing in the Golf. My sister out in Cali has a GTI with a V6. We hauled across the country last summer in that thing, and it made me appreciate VW's all the more.
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Old May 6, 2004, 04:29 PM   #3
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The VR6 is a substantial engine, especially the 240 hp model in the R32.

I didn't see any of the mk. V Golfs there--only the remaining mk. IVs and GTIs. They're quite reasonably priced so I'm surprised that the price has risen much. Perhaps, they've gone back to the level that they were with the mk. IIs, which were quite a bit more than other economy cars.

Concerning the Phaeton, it isn't surprising that it hasn't sold well. The Passat W8 is also a slow seller, although I imagine that the Toureg has turned over much more quickly simply because it's one of very few German SUVs. $44,000 for the V8 version isn't bad until you think 1970 VW Beetle.
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Old May 6, 2004, 05:37 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by bousozoku
The VR6 is a substantial engine, especially the 240 hp model in the R32.

I didn't see any of the mk. V Golfs there--only the remaining mk. IVs and GTIs. They're quite reasonably priced so I'm surprised that the price has risen much. Perhaps, they've gone back to the level that they were with the mk. IIs, which were quite a bit more than other economy cars.

Concerning the Phaeton, it isn't surprising that it hasn't sold well. The Passat W8 is also a slow seller, although I imagine that the Toureg has turned over much more quickly simply because it's one of very few German SUVs. $44,000 for the V8 version isn't bad until you think 1970 VW Beetle.
I never quite understood the Phaeton...doesn't Volkswagon mean "the people's car" ? Since when is an $80,000 luxury auto for ordinary folks? It seems they should have just opted to upgrade the Audi A-8 (aren't they owned by the same company??) Anyway...the VR6 is pretty heavy...quite the kick. My little 4.0 engine gets me around, but man after tasting the good life, I know what I am missing.
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Old May 6, 2004, 07:27 PM   #5
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Yes, Volks (people) wagen (car) seems an odd brand for an expensive car, but there are rich people too and they want a rich people's car.

The Phaeton, in person, reminded me of the Aston Martin Lagonda for various reasons. Someone will yell at me for that but either car just feels more than a bit out of place. The Lagonda was an amazing car but it ended up at the wrong marque. The Phaeton would make a great Audi A12 but even with my enthusiasm for Volkswagen, I just don't like it that much. Still, just bringing it to market was a feat. Version 2 will be much more realistic, I'm certain.
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Old May 6, 2004, 08:59 PM   #6
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This seems to be the new trend for car dealerships. VW is the first, and most aggressive. Honda is now starting their dealer redesigns.

It's called brand awareness....
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Old May 6, 2004, 09:53 PM   #7
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They use the same design for their showrooms in the UK as well, checked out the new Golf the other day and my dad has ordered one! They had the Phaeton and the Touraeg (sp?) in the dealership we visited as well, both very nice but I'd still buy an S-Class and an X5 instead I think.
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Old May 6, 2004, 10:50 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by cheekyspanky
They use the same design for their showrooms in the UK as well, checked out the new Golf the other day and my dad has ordered one! They had the Phaeton and the Touraeg (sp?) in the dealership we visited as well, both very nice but I'd still buy an S-Class and an X5 instead I think.
Wheeee! A mk. V Golf!

I think I'd rather have the Touareg (I checked the VW site), because it shares hardware with the Porsche Cayenne, rather than the BMW.
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Old May 6, 2004, 10:58 PM   #9
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I think it may be a while ill the "car park"idea in the US.

One of the design ideas i have heard of is the "stacks" of cars that we can choose from....
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Old May 6, 2004, 11:10 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Chip NoVaMac
I think it may be a while ill the "car park"idea in the US.

One of the design ideas i have heard of is the "stacks" of cars that we can choose from....
We have one of those too: Central Florida Chrysler Jeep Dodge. I'll have to get a photo of that too. It was quite overwhelming.
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Old May 6, 2004, 11:16 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by bousozoku
We have one of those too: Central Florida Chrysler Jeep Dodge. I'll have to get a photo of that too. It was quite overwhelming.
Can you post the photo?
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Old May 6, 2004, 11:17 PM   #12
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Can you post the photo?
Hey, if I drive 20 miles to take the photo, I will most definitely post it.
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Old May 6, 2004, 11:30 PM   #13
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Hey, if I drive 20 miles to take the photo, I will most definitely post it.
From what I understand there are zoning issues with the idea. In other countries this idea has been a benefit to the sales process....
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Old May 7, 2004, 07:32 AM   #14
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From what I understand there are zoning issues with the idea. In other countries this idea has been a benefit to the sales process....
Could someone explain this "stack of cars" concept? (if no picture is available) I haven't any idea what you are talking about and am curious. Thanks!

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Old May 7, 2004, 08:51 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by keysersoze
Could someone explain this "stack of cars" concept? (if no picture is available) I haven't any idea what you are talking about and am curious. Thanks!

What they do is have a "parking garage" that each car is stacked one on top another. The only way to get to these cars is through a "robot" that pulls the car down for the shopper.
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Old May 7, 2004, 08:59 AM   #16
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What they do is have a "parking garage" that each car is stacked one on top another. The only way to get to these cars is through a "robot" that pulls the car down for the shopper.
Chip- Thanks for the quick reply. Do you know if the shopper has access to the different levels, if he/she wants a closer look, or do they just stand on the ground and look up at everything? Is the purpose to save space in space-limited lots? I wonder how long it takes for the "robot" to get a car down. That's crazy!
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Old May 7, 2004, 09:04 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by keysersoze
Chip- Thanks for the quick reply. Do you know if the shopper has access to the different levels, if he/she wants a closer look, or do they just stand on the ground and look up at everything? Is the purpose to save space in space-limited lots? I wonder how long it takes for the "robot" to get a car down. That's crazy!
Actually the concept from what i understand is that the shopper works from a catalog and sales staff first. Test drives are handled by vehicles on the "lot" from what I have heard. This design is gaining popularity in Europe. So some from across the pond should be better able to fill us in on this idea.
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Old May 7, 2004, 09:53 AM   #18
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VW online

I bought my VW without taking one for a test drive and built it online. I was looking for fuel mileage, SUV like space (actually more than some SUV's) and maybe even alternative fuel options in a car and VIOLA! The VW TDI Jetta Wagon (52mpg - better than listed, 52cu.ft. of cargo space - seats down, and I can burn BIOdiesel) . I think their online car-builder made it even easier for me to make the choice.

Once I finally made it to a dealership it looked JUST like the one in the images above. I asked to walk out to the lot to my car, since I had already done the negotiations over the phone (didn't pay a penny more once I got to the dealership).

In the end, it was the vehicle and that online building option that sold the car. I jumped in the car and drove away knowing that it was what I wanted - a test drive wasn't necessary.

Talk about a zealot.

A VW/Apple owner in Oregon,

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Old May 7, 2004, 10:28 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by bousozoku
The Phaeton was priced well, for, ummm, someone. The "gas guzzler tax" looks more like a down payment for a car. From the rear, it doesn't look much like a VW at all, but has traces of just about everything else.
Yeah, that Audi A8...err, I mean VW Phaeton is pretty nice. It's mentioned in this Forbes article about the most overhyped cars in history.

http://www.forbes.com/vehicles/2004/..._0426feat.html

Oh, and about those robot things...
Is it sort of like an elongated Ferris wheel? If so, they have them at the hospital where I take my kids. (The contraption's obviously cheaper than the land.) There are two garage bay doors and, once you park inside, an elevator takes your car up, up, and away. I think it can hold 9 or 10 cars in the space of, say, 3 regular parking spaces.

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Old May 7, 2004, 10:29 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by keysersoze
It seems they should have just opted to upgrade the Audi A-8
instead they decided to downgrade the A8

1st. the Audi is made of Aluminium and the VW Barge is steel.
2nd. the VW badge lacks prestige in this company (Audi, BMW, Jag, Merc).

It was doomed from the start purely on the 2nd, and the 1st just made it kicking material for the A8, 7 Series, XJ and the S Class because it's dynamically way, way behind the opposition. VW should have resurrected the Phaeton name as a separate brand, much like Merc did with the Maybach.

So then bousozoku... you tempted by the R32??? Vroom Vroom

I'm quite liking the new Golf GTI, seems to have gone back to the Mk1 idiom. It looks like the new GTI is finally going to be worthy of wearing the legendary 'GTI' badge on it's grill, especially after the shameful bloat of the Mk 3 and Mk 4 that bought disgrace on the name by being too slow and undynamic

I prefer the Golf in Bora (Jetta) form, but then I prefer the saloon car aesthetic, the latest issue of 'Autocar', has a GTI version of the MK 5 Bora, which looks pretty tight aswell.

I'm just lovin' that oldschool red pinstripe on the new GTI's grill... spot on
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Old May 7, 2004, 10:36 AM   #21
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iGAV, I think you hit the nail on the head. Here's what Forbes says about VW's luxurious new offering.

Squire

The main question about Volkswagen's new Phaeton luxury sedan is: "What were they thinking?"

Anyone shopping for a vehicle would be impressed by the car's luxurious interior, sleek lines and crisp performance. The problem, as many critics (including Forbes.com) have pointed out, is that the Phaeton's base prices range from $65,000 for V-8 models to $95,000 for 12-cylinder cars. It is hard to imagine anyone who would be willing to drop so much money on this car when the superior Audi A8 L sedan--also made by VW--is on sale for the same amount across the showroom floor.

Despite the fact that Volkswagen says that it wanted to build the best car in the world, it can't give the Phaeton away. Only 453 of the cars were sold in the U.S. in the first quarter. That's 35% of the total number of A8s that Audi sold over the same period and, to compare the Phaeton to a segment leader, 15% of the total number of LS 430 sedans that Toyota Motor's (nyse: TM - news - people ) Lexus sold in the first quarter.
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Old May 7, 2004, 11:11 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by Squire

Oh, and about those robot things...
Is it sort of like an elongated Ferris wheel? If so, they have them at the hospital where I take my kids. (The contraption's obviously cheaper than the land.) There are two garage bay doors and, once you park inside, an elevator takes your car up, up, and away. I think it can hold 9 or 10 cars in the space of, say, 3 regular parking spaces.

Squire
that is one of the incarnations of the idea. One of the newer ones is an elevator that goes to the "floor" the car is on. And then it it is loaded on to the "elevator lift" from what I understand.
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Old May 20, 2004, 09:44 PM   #23
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Can you post the photo?
As requested, these are photos of the dealership.
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