Volkswagen may not bring Golf GTD to the US over engine issue

Article by Christian Andrei, on April 24, 2014

Volkswagen Golf GTD – a more powerful diesel version of the Golf -- may not be sold in the United States since importing its engine from Germany would be too costly. It turned out that the high-powered 2-liter TDI engine for the GTD cannot be built at the carmaker’s engine site in Silao, Mexico, which means so it would be imported from Germany.

Michael Horn, chief executive of Volkswagen Group of America, remarked that the GTD “would be a great car.” But since its price point is not attractive, the probability of introducing it to the US is diminishing. Volkswagen said in 2013 that it might start selling the GTD in the US in 2015.

Andres Valbuena, product manager for the Golf, remarked back then that the GTD would have a price of around $27,000. Valbuena said that they regard the GTD as a very important part of their full range of offerings, “a technology halo” for the carmaker’s diesel technology.

VW’s Silao plant, which opened last year with annual capacity of 330,000 engines, will produce the less powerful diesel engine that runs the Golf TDI. VW is planning to introduce the rest of the Golf family in the US in 2015 – the GTI in May and the Golf and Golf TDI in August.

They will be followed by the e-Golf in the fall, and the Golf SportWagen and Golf R in early 2015. Horn provided some updates on VW’s product lineup. For instance, the mid-cycle update of the Passat in 2015 will be more aggressive than the refreshed Jetta unveiled in New York.

The refreshed Passat will feature VW’s new MIB infotainment system. VW will be introducing a value-priced Golf powered by a TDI diesel engine to capture economical buyers. Likewise, US consumers can avail of a “value edition” of the Jetta sedan that starts at just above $22,115 including freight.

The German carmaker is set to decide this summer whether to make an investment in all-wheel-drive tooling at its Puebla site in Mexico, which should cut the cost of awd versions of cars like the Golf and Golf SportWagen.

Horn revealed that VW will not sell the current Scirocco to the US since it is not homologated according to US safety standards. He remarked the Scirocco might arrive in the US “if there’s a successor.”

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