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Beetlemania: Volkswagen is back!

Beetlemania: Volkswagen is back!
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Volkswagen’s back! But hold that pendong.

The German car company is back in the Philippines under new management, sporting a new look, and in a few weeks’ time, with a new Beetle.

New toys for the boys

The new Beetle has more subdued curves compared to its famous 2nd-gen ancestor. It takes cues from the 1st-gen Beetle and, maybe, a Porsche 911. The makeover turned the iconic car into a stud to appeal to the equally handsome market. The new Beetle will sell for about P1,500,000.

There’s one in the country right now, driven by an Ayala executive.  Shell out an initial P50,000 to get dibs on the next units.

Arriving before the Beetle are the Jetta (P880,000) and Polo Notch (P1.098M) sedans, the Touran (P1,775,000), and the SUVs Tiguan (P2,109,000) and Touareg (P4,290,000), which are all now available. The sedans come with manual transmission, while the SUVs with automatic. Both types run on diesel. The Touareg is the bestseller so far, according to VW execs.

Interactive & digitalized showroom

All these, including the Beetle by March or April, can be seen at Volkswagen BGC, the car company’s Philippine flagship showroom in Bonifacio Global City, Taguig.

Formally inaugurated on February 3, 2014, this is said to be the country’s most interactive and digitalized showroom, boasting a floor area of more than 6,000sqm and using the latest Volkswagen Interactive Showroom application developed by Linked Tech Solutions of Hong Kong. Volkswagen BGC is the second in the world to use such technologies, the first one being Volkswagen HK.

The showroom uses  V Tables, which are large tables with touchscreen surfaces that let you browse car models, email e-brochures, and watch videos, among others. The paperless concept is reinforced by the V Tablets, which are iPad Air units loaded with the same content.

You won’t be handed brochures anymore, and reservations can be done digitally via the V Tablets.

Classic bugs live!

What about old Beetles? You can bring them to Volkswagen’s Greenfield Service Center and they will try to fix it for you. But it’s a hard task, especially if you got your bugs from God-knows-where. If they will order old parts, they’ll probably do it in bulk, so round up other vintage VW owners beforehand.

As for selling iconic models such as the Kombi or the older Beetles, you’ve got to pray harder.

More showrooms

Automobile Central Enterprise, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Ayala Corporation and Volkswagen’s new and official distributor in the Philippines, will be opening more showrooms throughout the country. The groundbreaking of a second showroom, this time in Cebu, was held recently. Alabang and Quezon City showrooms are due some time soon. 

VW was first distributed in the country by DMG Motors in the ‘60s and was brought back in the ‘90s by another distributor, but the cars were pulled out by the mid-2000s.

For more info, visit Volkswagen’s showroom at 28th Street City Center, Bonifacio Global City, Taguig, or call (02) 459-4562. You can also drop by the Volkswagen Greenfield Service Center or call them at (02) 631-1850.

Words Elaine Cotoner

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