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09 April 2009 ~ 0 Comments

Volkswagen Polo Challenge: 1.4 million downloads

Embracing the mobile gaming generation, Volkswagen’s new Polo promotion on the Apple iPhone platform has been a worldwide download hit.
Launched on the fashionable device on 3 March just as the real car was unveiled at the Geneva Motor Show, it took just two weeks for the Volkswagen Polo Challenge game to notch up a number one placing on the download charts in 39 countries, and enter the Top 10 of the US download charts.
Within four weeks of its launch the interactive 3D game has been even more of a success; over 1.4 million copies have now been downloaded. Exceeding all expectations, the US high chart position is especially staggering; the car is not even sold there.
Keen to repeat the success, Volkswagen may decide to embrace the medium once more with future model releases. Targeting the younger demographic with the eight-course game and interactive marketing tool, it remains to be seen how many virtual-world downloads are translated into actual real-world new Polo sales.

Embracing the mobile gaming generation, Volkswagen’s new Polo promotion on the Apple iPhone platform has been a worldwide download hit.

Launched on the fashionable device on 3 March just as the real car was unveiled at the Geneva Motor Show, it took just two weeks for the Volkswagen Polo Challenge game to notch up a number one placing on the download charts in 39 countries, and enter the Top 10 of the US download charts.

2009-VW-Polo-Challenge-Screen-Front

Within four weeks of its launch the interactive 3D game has been even more of a success; over 1.4 million copies have now been downloaded. Exceeding all expectations, the US high chart position is especially staggering; the car is not even sold there.

Keen to repeat the success, Volkswagen may decide to embrace the medium once more with future model releases. Targeting the younger demographic with the eight-course game and interactive marketing tool, it remains to be seen how many virtual-world downloads are translated into actual real-world new Polo sales.

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08 April 2009 ~ 0 Comments

Volkswagen Polo for India

2009 VW Polo S080409

The Volkswagen Polo is now a global car, with versions on sale in Europe, Australia, China, South Africa, and South America. Manufactured in all these locations, too, Volkswagen is to introduce the car to the emerging Indian market in 2010, and opened its plant in Pune on 31 March.

With a maximum annual production capacity of 110,000 vehicles (almost all of which will be for the local market), the new factory complex will play a major role towards achieving the Volkswagen Group’s growth targets on the Indian subcontinent.

The 580 million euro Pune facility will be the Volkswagen Group’s 61st production site, and heralds the largest investment in India by a German company to date. The Škoda Fabia will be the first model to be produced in Pune, adding to the other Audi, Škoda, and Volkswagen models built in VW’s Aurangabad plant.

Production of a specially-developed version of the new Polo for the Indian market will start in 2010, and Volkswagen Group brand communications head, Kurt Rippholz, has reportedly said that two versions will be available – both a hatchback and a saloon. The Polo name has been confirmed for the market, too, further entrenching the model’s heritage.

Exciting times then, for the mainstay of Volkswagen’s small car line-up. With rumours persisting about a debut in the US, and a full roll-out of the new-generation model later in 2009, Volkswagen is clearly pushing to make the Polo even more of a global car.

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08 April 2009 ~ 0 Comments

2009 Polo: first TV commercial

Volkswagen only pulled the covers off the new generation of its supermini challenger last month, but, ready for the European launch this summer, there’s already a TV spot for it.

And, surprise surprise, it’s aimed at cool and beautiful twenty- or early thirty-somethings who seem to have a very desirable lifestyle. Nice film, though.

(Thanks to The German Car Blog.)

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10 March 2009 ~ 0 Comments

New Polo driving game races onto the Apple iPhone

The paint has barely been dry on the Geneva Motor Show cars, but Volkswagen has clearly had its eyes on the launch of the new Polo for quite some time. And, this multimedia game for the fashionable Apple iPhone clearly hints at the younger, techno-savvy market that the company is clearly chasing for its new premium supermini. Just that this new game exists is proof of that.

For its first interactive marketing venture on the iPhone platform, VW has called in the big guns. Developed by FISHLABS, the world’s leading developer and publisher of 3D racing games, VW Polo Challenge has eight animated tracks, and realistic four-point driving physics. Innovative controls and a score by up and coming German rockers Feinkost add to the game’s credibility.

As with other games for the platform, the new 3D-rendered Polo can be accelerometer-steered around its sunny landscapes by tilting the device itself, with the difficulty increasing with every track. And if driving the car around a virtual course isn’t enough, the game menu can navigate you to the nearest Volkswagen retailer via GPS and Google Maps so that you can put pedal to the metal on real roads (after you’ve read the included press pack, of course).

The German car maker appreciates the marketing value of the gaming application, and claims it is breaking integrated communication ground. Michael Schade, CEO of FISHLABS Entertainment GmbH is equally believing of the product, too: ‘VW has really touched the zeitgeist with the 3D racing game for the new Polo. Games are by far the most popular application for these groundbreaking Apple platforms, and with the help of our large fan community of umpteen million mobile gamers, the new VW Polo will spread like wildfire.’

Though not the first manufacturer-approved racing game (there’s also the Audi A4 Driving Challenge, while BMW has commissioned a Z4-based application), VW Polo Challenge is fun to play (though not for users with heavy-handed coordination like us), and looks great. Available for the iPhone and iPod touch, it can be downloaded now (free of charge) from the Apple iTunes Apps Store.

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10 March 2009 ~ 0 Comments

Freshly-minted Polo for US drivers?

After the flurry of last week’s Geneva Motor Show unveiling , more news and footage of the new Polo has been leaching from Volkswagen. First though, the bad news: it’s been reported that prices in the UK may rise by £500 (but it appears that you do get much more car for the money), and three-door versions arrive here in December, two months after the family friendly five-door models.
Not to worry, though, as it should be worth the wait.
One market that has waited for far too long is the US. The Golf (or Rabbit as it’s known Stateside) has long been the smallest Volkswagen on sale in the US, but that could be about to change. The Polo has never been sold to American punters in all its 34-year history, but many websites across the pond are reporting stories about an imminent turnaround.
Volkswagen Group of America CEO Stefan Jacoby has reportedly recently confirmed that the company now thinks the time is right to import the Polo, and finally make it a proper world car. On sale in China, South Africa, South America, and of course its mainstay market of Europe, it has always eluded US buyers. It makes sense – VW could make the car in its Mexican plant at Puebla alongside the Jetta and New Beetle models.
Primarily using the car to triple its annual US sales volumes to around 800,000 units, reports state the Polo could hit American shores as early as 2010/2011 to take full advantage of the small car market, currently the fastest-growing segment in the country. Jacoby’s statement of intent comes after VW’s development chief Ulrich Hackenberg spoke to Automotive News at the 2009 North American International Auto Show in January.
US Volkswagen enthusiasts have long hankered after the Polo (especially the GTI and more recently, the BlueMotion, although the new version does remind us of the Dodge Caliber), with forums abuzz with comments asking VW to import the car. Following the reports from the last couple of months, the big question is, are they about to be rewarded for their patience?

After the flurry of last week’s Geneva Motor Show unveiling, more news and footage of the new Polo has been leaching from Volkswagen. First though, the bad news: it’s been reported that prices in the UK may rise by £500 (but it appears that you do get much more car for the money), and three-door versions arrive here in December, two months after the family friendly five-door models.

2009 VW Polo F100309

Not to worry, though, as it should be worth the wait.

One market that has waited for far too long is the US. The Golf (or Rabbit as it’s known Stateside) has long been the smallest Volkswagen on sale in the US, but that could be about to change. The Polo has never been sold to American punters in all its 34-year history, but many websites across the pond are reporting stories about an imminent turnaround.

2009 VW Polo P100309

Volkswagen Group of America CEO Stefan Jacoby has reportedly recently confirmed that the company now thinks the time is right to import the Polo, and finally make it a proper world car. On sale in China, South Africa, South America, and of course its mainstay market of Europe, it has always eluded US buyers. It makes sense – VW could make the car in its Mexican plant at Puebla alongside the Jetta and New Beetle models.

Primarily using the car to triple its annual US sales volumes to around 800,000 units, reports state the Polo could hit American shores as early as 2010/2011 to take full advantage of the small car market, currently the fastest-growing segment in the country. Jacoby’s statement of intent comes after VW’s development chief Ulrich Hackenberg spoke to Automotive News at the 2009 North American International Auto Show in January.

2009 VW Polo R100309

US Volkswagen enthusiasts have long hankered after the Polo (especially the GTI and more recently, the BlueMotion, although the new version does remind us of the Dodge Caliber), with forums abuzz with comments asking VW to import the car. Following the reports from the last couple of months, the big question is, are they about to be rewarded for their patience?

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