Tell us about the Teramont…
So yes it is our first seven seater and we’re targeting the car toward families. I agree it’s been a while coming — we’ve not been the leader in this segment — however we did investigate and research quite a lot before introducing this car and I think now we have got a car that’s very relevant for family buyers. It’s relevant for active lifestyles, in terms of utility and features, and it’s a great value proposition in terms of price point.
What about pricing?
We understand this segment has family buyers who are price sensitive and we have competition in this market who also have very competitive prices, so we want to offer in the market is a American built, bold SUV with Volkswagen touches but at a very competitive price.
What are the highlights of the car?
It is very intelligently made, for example we understand the third row access was always a problem for any seven seater SUV, so the engineers back in the factory have done a fabulous job to give a one handle mechanism where you can enter and exit with a very smooth entry access point — even for adults, not just for kids. Fundamentally Teramont in terms of length and wheelbase is bigger than the Touareg and just to highlight a point Teramont has one of the longest wheelbases in its segment which signifies that for a family there is more interior space. So again we go back to our target customer which is families.
Is it off-road capable?
It is a full fledged SUV with all grades coming with 4Motion standard. We understand families would not predominantly go off road but we want to show that the car has the character and ability to go off road if the situation presents itself.
Where does it fit in the larger product range?
The whole organisation is currently really optimistic with the Teramont coming into the picture. We never had a car between the Tiguan and the Touareg — we had a gap for many years. With Teramont coming in the picture we’ll be more acceptable to more customers in the market so we will be present in the bigger picture. We are very optimistic that we’ll have a large part of our sales volume coming from Teramont. So we understand that SUV segment is booming over the world and the Middle East is no exception. Globally we have an SUV offensive strategy, which we will try to replicate in this part of the world starting with Teramont. I cannot 100 per cent say which other cars will be coming in but we are certainly looking at different segments within the SUV category, to bring in cars which are attractive for our customers.
Would that include the T-Roc?
We are investigating in terms of project feasibility with our headquarters. Once it’s confirmed I’ll be happy to tell you.
Are you bringing all-electric vehicles to the Middle East?
We are working in parallel with our HQ to introduce E. vehicles which Volkswagen globally are expected to introduce our all electric ID family from 2020 onwards, I cannot commit that at the same moment, we will have the same cars in the Middle East as well.
What’s the future strategy for the market?
We’re very focused in our strategy to increase our market share in the Middle East and that has to do with our new car introduction. We understand we have to introduce a lot of competitive cars but we promise that wherever we launch a Volkswagen it’ll always have market relevant specifications and German engineering.
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