Two of Volkswagen’s former vehicles will make a comeback in the U.S., according to the automaker’s future product portfolio. Automotive News said that the two vehicles that will be returning are the Phaeton ultra-luxury sedan and a new three-row Bulli that takes inspiration from the original Volkswagen Microbus. The Volkswagen Phaeton was phased out in 2006 due to poor sales. One reason cited was its high price. Customers didn’t want to pay for a VW car that cost the same as the Mercedes-Benz S-Class. Phaeton sales in the U.S. reached a peak of 1939 units in 2004, before falling to 820 in 2005 and declining further to only 235 in 2006. The report also said that the new version of the Phaeton will be launched in Europe in 2015, and that the car would arrive in the U.S. but the date is still unclear.
We know that a new architecture will be used for the new luxury car, possibly called MLM Evo and may be shared with Audi. It’s possible that will have a “five-door coupe” design similar to Audi’s A7 and Mercedes’ CLS-Class. It’s also expected to offer interior quality comparable with Bentley cars. It would probably be available with four- and six-cylinder gasoline engines, and a new hybrid drivetrain.
The Automotive News report gave confirmation that VW intends to sell the Bulli people carrier to the U.S. The Bulli, which was displayed numerous times as a concept car, is a modern interpretation of the classic Volkswagen Microbus. The report further revealed that the Bulli will make its debut in 2014 or 2015. It will be released a three-row model powered by either a small four-cylinder gasoline or diesel engine. VW’s previous concepts hinted at an all-electric Bulli but apparently, the company decided to not follow those plans.