Under a plan to lower emissions of Volkswagen AG's locally built vehicles, the carmaker is set on spending EUR400 million ($508 million) to start building fuel-efficient dual-clutch transmissions in China.
Winfried Vahland, who heads VW's China operations, said that the start of production in China is a further important step for the Volkswagen Group China.
He added that with the support of advanced propulsion technologies, VW will be closer to its goal of widening its market share while reducing consumption and emissions of its cars at the same time. Three years ago, VW set a target to lower fleet consumption and carbon dioxide emissions in China by 20% by 2010.
VW has plans to produce the seven-speed so-called "DSG" (Direct Shift Gearbox) transmission at its Dalian powertrain site, where 300,000 units will be produced initially before the capacity can later be doubled.
Last April, VW revealed that the investment program in two of its joint ventures in China will be boosted through 2012 by EUR1.6 billion to EUR6 billion altogether. This investment will be financed directly using the cash flow of the two joint ventures.
Also in April, the Volkswagen Polo was named as the 2010 World Car of the Year. The VW Polo bested 30 vehicles initially nominated by 59 World Car jurors from 25 countries. These World Car Awards jurors were named by the World Car Steering Committee according to their expertise, credibility, influence and experience. Each of these jurors drives and evaluates new vehicles on a regular basis as part of their work.
These jurors also boast of a wide reach, together reaching millions of audience globally. From 30 vehicles, the list was trimmed by the jurors to 10 vehicles in January 2010. Then in February this, jurors participated in a second round of voting. They were made to score each nominee according to merit, environment, value, safety, significance and emotional appeal. The final scores were gathered, tabulated and audited by international accounting firm KPMG.
After the final count, highest votes went to the VW Polo, allowing it to be named as the 2010 World Car of the Year. Completing the top three were the Mercedes-Benz E-Class and the Toyota Prius. Jurors noted that the all-new Polo blends best-in-segment packaging and handling with reliability, classy looks and quality. They added that as stylish and classy as it looks, the VW Polo is also safe, as supported by its maximum five-star crash-test rating from Euro NCAP. Furthermore, the Polo boasts of a superb driving position with precise controls.