Category: Volkswagen

Volkswagen Hires 1,000 IT Experts to Develop Self Driving Cars

December 29, 2016 lacarguy Volkswagen Tags: , , ,

Automakers are beginning to push artificial intelligence technology and other autonomous systems into their vehicles. A few automakers have something for self-parking, a couple luxury vehicles come equipped with the technology to navigate through traffic at slow speeds without help from the driver and there are adaptive cruise control features on a range of models today. While each of those features is pretty darned impressive, they all pale in comparison to what the automakers, including Volkswagen, are planning for the future. They want to create ultra-intelligent vehicles that can handle a wide range of decision-making tasks on their own, which is exactly why Volkswagen is recruiting IT specialists so heavily at the moment.


Hiring 1,000 New IT Experts

In order to keep up with all the new tech demands that come with remaining at the leading edge of innovation in the automotive industry, Volkswagen is hired a total of 1,000 new IT specialists, and they’re going to work hard to develop autonomous driving systems for VW over the next three years. It’s a tall order to get them to develop such advanced systems in that period of time, but with such a strong workforce Volkswagen should have a solid set of features by the end of the period.

Are Self driving Cars Possible for VW?

Self-driving cars are possible for every automaker, and Volkswagen clearly believes that it can develop vehicles that will drive themselves capably, which is why it’s making such a big investment into the technology now. There’s no guarantee that Volkswagen will be able to develop self-driving vehicles within the next 3 or even 5 years, but with prototypes out that are already handling some aspects of autonomous driving, it’s not hard to believe that it will happen.

EVs and Autonomous Vehicles the Future of VW?

Volkswagen is betting big on electric vehicles and autonomous driving, especially in countries lik the United States where the technology is gaining rapid interest. Volkswagen already has a full-electric out, the e-Golf, but it has big plans for more capable EVs in the future, and it wouldn’t be surprising if they eventually drive on their own as well.

The technology possibilities for Volkswagen are exciting, and they’ll likely remain at the forefront of the industry over the next decade thanks to the strong emphasis they’re putting into development and technological improvements, but only time will tell for sure. In the meantime, if you would like to make use of a pretty capable little EV, the e-Golf travels close to 100 miles on a charge and it’s a solid car sold at many Volkswagen dealerships around the country.

The Golf GTI Could be a Surprisingly Good Track Car

December 27, 2016 lacarguy Volkswagen Tags: , , ,

The Volkswagen Golf GTI Clubsport S special edition car was used to set the front-wheel drive lap record at Nurburgring back in May with a pretty impressive time of just 7 minutes and 49 seconds. That same car has since been used to achieve an even more impressive time of 7 minutes and 47 seconds, putting it more than 3 seconds ahead of the next fastest front-wheel drive vehicle tested there, the Honda Civic Type R. While this special edition of the VW Golf isn’t available stateside, there are plenty of Golf GTI models that are, and they offer similar performance specifications as well.


Why the Golf ClubSport S Can Set Records

There are a few different things that allow the Clubsport S to beat out other cars like the Honda Civic Type R. One of the main things that it has going for it is a lightweight body. Careful considerations make the Clubsport S one of the lightest cars to go around the ring.

Volkswagen opted for a six-speed manual clutch instead of the heavier dual clutch setup. The automaker also went with aluminum parts whenever possible and removed the rear seat, as well as floor mats and sound proofing material to shed a bit more weight. Overall it went down to an impressively low weight figure that made the most of the 310 HP offered by the 2.0 liter turbocharged 4-cylinder engine.

Excellent Handling and Lightweight Body

There are two things that make the Golf Clubsport S an excellent track car that it shares with the Golf GTI, a lightweight body and excellent handling mechanics. No matter which version of the vehicle you go with, you get excellent handling and a car that can take on the sharp corners without issue. If you opt for the Golf GTI you’ll enjoy a total of 210 HP and 258 lb.-ft. of torque to play with. Not only will you have all that power, but you’ll also have a lightweight vehicle that makes excellent use of it. The Golf is a small car that doesn’t weigh much at all, so when you consider that before thinking about the level of power it has, it’s easy to see why the Golf GTI is a good solid track car.

While the standard Golf GTI isn’t going to achieve lap speeds like the Clubsport S, it would probably hold its own nicely and command a decent time. Even if it isn’t a race car, the 2017 Golf GTI looks to be a very fun vehicle and a decent option for drivers that want something little and exciting to tool around in.

Volkswagen Prepares the Bigger and Better 2018 Tiguan

December 16, 2016 lacarguy Volkswagen Tags: , ,

While 2017 is nearly upon us, Volkswagen is hard at work on its 2018 model-year Tiguan. The latest crossover gets some exciting changes that are worth talking about, and we aren’t just talking about tech improvements that most models get between releases.


2017 Volkswagen Tiguan
2017 Volkswagen Tiguan

Made for Fuel Efficiency

Most crossovers today don’t care about fuel efficiency very much and they focus on power instead. This is a real mistake that Volkswagen isn’t making. Their 2018 Tiguan is focused specifically on fuel-efficiency, and it will show. There aren’t any figures out about the specific efficiency of this model, but buyers should expect great things from it anyway. The engine doesn’t put out flashy power figures, but it is completely designed for maximum efficiency figures, meaning that you should be able to drive surprisingly far on a single tank of fuel.

In order to make this crossover as efficient as possible, VW did have to make some changes to it. The automaker dropped down to a four-cylinder turbo-charged engine and they added on an eight-speed transmission. Doing this reduced the overall HP level slightly, but the automaker claims that it will boost efficiency figures nicely, while also enhancing acceleration at low speeds where it’s most needed.

Choose a Mid-Sized SUV

The current Volkswagen Tiguan is a decent-sized SUV, but it might not be quite large enough for some auto buyers with bigger families. That means they either have to jump up to the massive Touareg, or go to a different automaker in order to get the size that’s best for their actual needs. Well that is until now!

Volkswagen will be announcing another Tiguan option at the North American International Auto Show in 2017 in Detroit. This option will be longer and potentially have more seating space than the standard Tiguan does. Volkswagen is making two distinct changes on the model, giving it a longer wheelbase by 7.4″ and increasing its overall length by 10.7″. This creates enough space to add in a third row of seats and provide a total of two seating spots offering space for up to 7, or it adds a bunch more cargo room, the choice is yours.

Sitting on the MQB Platform

Volkswagen’s universal platform is the MQB and it’s known for offering good stability and excellent performance. If you are looking for a good solid VW vehicle, you won’t be disappointed with nearly anything that’s fitted on this highly tested platform. That’s why it’s good to hear that the Tiguan is going to be based on it as well.

There’s still a lot that we don’t yet know about the 2018 Tiguan, but it should bring some exciting changes for crossover owners looking to pick up a new vehicle. Whether they are interested in more interior space than the outgoing model, better fuel efficiency figures or exciting tech upgrades, all three will be available when the latest model finally hits the market, likely near the end of 2017.


Volkswagen Working to Find the Best Battery Tech for its EVs

December 8, 2016 lacarguy Volkswagen Tags: , ,

Volkswagen is all about electric vehicles lately, but all the automakers major plans for the future hinge on top-level battery technology. Without a high quality battery the EVs simply won’t drive far enough or fast enough to be worthwhile. That’s why Volkswagen is putting in the time and effort to locate the very best battery tech available, and to making sure that it’s leveraging this technology as much as possible. The automaker is hard at work with many battery developers looking for the latest advancements and the technology that is going to make its electric vehicles stand out.


Creating the Perfect Battery Module

Volkswagen has quite the problem on its hands, but once it’s solved, the automaker will be able to produce small and large EVs using the same exact battery technology. Essentially Volkswagen is looking for a way to create lightweight batteries that produce ample power and run efficiently in any configuration they’re needed in. In other words, whether the space available is cylindrical, square or any other odd shape, Volkswagen will be able to fill it up with efficient batteries to do the job properly. This is the goal of all Volkswagen’s careful engineering meetings, and it’s something that the automaker is working hard at to achieve, but something that hasn’t been accomplished yet.

Developing More Potent Battery Cells

Volkswagen isn’t just working on coming up with the perfect packaging or setup for its battery cells, it’s also working hard on coming up with new more potent cells to use in its vehicles. The automaker is partnered with a bunch of different electronics companies that are all hard at work developing the latest battery technologies. By working with so many different companies, Volkswagen is hopeful that some major breakthroughs will come along in the next year or two to create much more capable batteries for its vehicles. There is a 60 amp-hour cell that’s currently being tested, which would offer dramatic improvements over the 37 amp-hour version that Volkswagen is currently waiting to go into production. Even the 37 amp-hour cells offer enough power to allow the Budd-E concept to travel more than 200 miles on a single charge. It will be very exciting to see what the 60 amp-hour cells are able to achieve.

Working with All Cell Shapes

In order to achieve the best level of performance out of its batteries, Volkswagen is working with pouch shaped, prismatic shaped and cylindrical shaped batteries in order to find what works the absolute best. Many automakers are simply choosing one technology and sticking with it. That’s the strategy of massive EV maker Tesla, but it might not be the right way to go, at least not in this crucial period of development. By not committing to any one cell toplogy, Volkswagen might be able to get better performance improvements out of the one that it finally decides to go with, or the automaker could take advantage of advancements that haven’t come along just yet.





VW Cuts Production to Current Model and Plans Future Improvements

November 27, 2016 lacarguy Volkswagen Tags: , , ,

While many people are still picking up the new Volkswagen CC, the automaker stated that there simply aren’t enough sales for the current generation of the vehicle to justify its continued production. For that reason the automaker has decided to discontinue it for the short term. It’s an interesting decision, and something that many VW fans wasn’t expecting, but it’s not all bad news. The next model is expected to bring some exciting changes.


Current CC is No Longer in Production

Experts are saying that Volkswagen is reportedly cutting off production of the current model year CC, but they are working on the next version already. The car isn’t selling in high enough volumes, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t obtain a current model year CC, because many dealerships still have quite a few in stock. The vehicle is known for sporty performance and exciting handling characteristics.

New and Improved CC

The next VW CC is expected to be noticeably improved over the current model year version. The car will be based on the MQB platform that many VW vehicles are being offered with and should have many similarities to the Passat. The car will come in both four and five seat varieties, depending on the options that you choose to get. The car should also be equipped with the very latest tech features available in consumer cars, making it a strong competitor to other sporty coupes out on the road.

Rugged Good Looks

The next version of the CC is expected to borrow heavily from the Sport Coupe Concept that VW recently showed off. That means it will likely have a sleek shape and a stout and masculine front end, giving the vehicle an overall edgy and tough appearance. It’s an exciting design direction for the CC to head in and could be just the thing needed to bring more interest to the coupe overall.

If you’re interested in the current Volkswagen CC it’s still available at most auto dealerships. If you are interested in the next version of the car, it should be released sometime next year, and bring with it a whole host of new and exciting changes.

Volkswagen is Determined to Use a Heads up Display

November 17, 2016 lacarguy Volkswagen Tags: , , , , ,

Volkswagen is committed to the idea of offering a heads up display on its ID electric vehicle. This vehicle won’t be available to purchase until 2020, but the heads up display is likely to still be a very exciting piece of technology. The way that Volkswagen describes the system, its will be a holographic overlay on the windshield of the vehicle to help you see better and drive more safely. While it’s impossible to say what features this system is going to have exactly, it’s something that Volkswagen is highly committed to.


Making Room for the System

Volkswagen really wants to put a heads up display in its electric vehicle. In fact, the automaker is so invested in the idea, that it actually moved the electric motor to the back, just so that there would be enough space to move the dashboard forward to make room for the HUD. It’s something that Volkswagen ID owners are almost certain to enjoy in the future.

Features of the System

While the HUD system is still a long ways away, Volkswagen goes into detail about the different features that should be included with it when it does get released. While running a navigation program, the system will highlight turns right on the road itself. The display will help you spot road turns faster and more effectively than traditional navigation systems are able to, making it particularly useful while driving at night.

The system will highlight potential road hazards so they are easier to spot as you drive around. A pedestrian crossing the street, or an animal out in the road would be lit up by the display so that you have no choice but to spot them while you drive.

Not only is the system likely to warn you about things on the road itself, but it will show off warning messages such as low traction, or snowy driving conditions up ahead. The system should be able to react to a variety of images that it picks up out on the road, which will make it particularly effective.

This sounds like a pretty exciting set of features that will make the Volkswagen ID a cool car to own, but 2020 is still quite a ways away, and the feature list, as well as the concept itself could change entirely before the vehicle is ever released. That’s why it’s important to keep an eye on the different features and make sure the car is offering exactly what you want before you purchase it.

Introducing the Volkswagen Passat GT Concept Car

November 16, 2016 lacarguy Volkswagen Tags: , , , ,

Volkswagen has been hard at work trying to expand its lineup, and one of the ways the automaker is doing that is by developing the Passat GT. This high-powered concept vehicle takes the family sedan that everyone knows and loves, and gives it a jolt of power. It’s more exciting, sportier and something that will likely appeal to many drivers that want something more when it comes to a sedan.


How the GT is Different

Volkswagen made over 20 changes to the stock Passat when developing the GT variation. The majority of the changes made to the vehicle are aesthetic ones, and both the inside and outside of the Passat GT have been made over dramatically.

Exterior Changes

This version of the vehicle is more eye-catching thanks to the black honeycomb grill insert that features red accent lines. The bumper, window surrounds and roof are all given black accents to help create a bit of contrast on the vehicle. There’s also a black spoiler added onto the vehicle that you simply wouldn’t find on a stock Passat. At the front of the vehicle you’ll also notice a pair of LED headlights that give the ve4hicle a modern look, and at the back you’ll see smoked taillights, a sport muffler and a dual trapezoidal exhaust system that really give the vehicle a sporty look. The Tornado wheel covers really help set off the custom look of the Passat GT, and they look particularly nice with the lowered ride height that’s 0.6 inches lower to the ground.

Interior Changes

When you climb inside the Passat GT you’ll find a bunch of changes there as well. They’re designed to give the interior a sporty look, while improving performance a bit as well. There’s a carbon fiber pattern on the door trim as well as the instrument panel. The vehicle comes with a black headliner and piano black trim around the center console that helps keep that black theme consistent. The sport seats are adorned with two-tone black and gray fabric with contrast stitching that really looks nice.

Performance Enhancements

The car comes equipped with a powerful 3.6 liter FSI VR6 engine that provides 280 HP overall. It’s attached to an efficient 6-speed DSG dual clutch transmission and there’s a set of paddle shifters to give the driver more control over how the vehicle performs.

The Passat GT concept is a cool little car that’s sporty and fast and a lot of fun. It’s something that Volkswagen will likely produce in the future, and it could be a cool addition to the Passat lineup for buyers more interested in the handling of a vehicle.

Revealing the 2018 Volkswagen Atlas

November 7, 2016 lacarguy Volkswagen Tags: , , , ,

Volkswagen has long been offering smaller vehicles that large families simply can’t make do with. For that reason they’ve been losing a large portion of the American market eveyr year. Now that’s all about to change, with the luxurious Volkswagen Atlas. VW just unveiled the 2018 model in all of its glory, and it’s quite impressive. Not only does it come with plenty of tech baked in, but it’s nice looking and seems like it will handle really well in a range of driving conditions. It’s the type of vehicle that families will jump at the chance to own, and it’s something that they can be proud to drive around as well.



The Atlas comes with a system known as Car-Net. This connected product allows users to make use of a variety of connected vehicle features. Products like Android Auto, Apple CarPlay and MirrorLink are fully supported by this technology.

Audio You Can Feel

This modern SUV comes equipped with the powerful Fender Premium Audio System that comes with 12 individual channels a 480 watt amplifier and 12 individual speakers throughout the vehicle for true surround sound performance and feel.

Power and Competence

This full-sized SUV is built on the highly capable MQB platform that Volkswagen uses for most of its vehicles today. This helps add some reliability into the mix, helping the SUV offer the type of performance that’s expected from Volkswagen.

There are two different engine options with the SUV, a 2.0 liter TSI turbocharged engine with a 238 HP output, or a more beefy 3.6 liter VR6 that puts out 280 HP. Either way, this SUV won’t feel sluggish and will offer decent acceleration without being over the top. The engines make use of a smooth eight-speed automatic transmission and there are both two-wheel and four-wheel variants of the vehicle, depending on what the buyer wants.

Selectable Terrain Management

Even a well-designed SUV isn’t made to take on every single type of terrain all the time. Certain driving conditions demand different drive styles and performance levels. That’s why it’s so nice to have the different drive modes to select from while driving the Atlas. The SUV comes with a set of modes depending on road types and conditions. You can switch among the options to make sure you always get the nice reliable performance that you want while driving around.

Meet the Awesome LEGO Golf MK1 GTI

November 4, 2016 lacarguy Volkswagen Tags: , , , ,

Nearly everything has been built out of Legos to date. If you hop on Youtube and look up some Lego videos you’ll find cities, vehicles, machines, characters and just about anything else that you can think of made out of the little plastic blocks. Up until now there hasn’t been a creation of the Lego Volkswagen Golf Mk1 GTI, but a lifelike design of the vehicle is available today, if Lego decides to support the creation made by one man.


The Creation

A Total of 1,278 pieces come together to create a very realistic version of the Volkswagen Golf MK1 GTI, a vehicle that’s becoming increasingly difficult to find out in the world. The kit looks highly realistic, and even makes use of custom stickers inside to give the interior of the vehicle a realistic steering wheel and center stack. The striped seats used within aren’t a perfect match to the common plaid interiors, but overall the Lego car is a spitting image of the vehicle rolling around outside.

Getting it into Production

If you like the look of this Volkswagen Lego creation, you can help make it into an actual kit that you can purchase. Lego ideas can be put into production as soon as they achieve support from 10,000 people. As of today, the project has a total of 8,536 supporters of the 10,000 that it needs to make it into production. That means that it’s incredibly close to hitting the target, and with more than 700 days left, it’s likely to make it to production as long as people continue supporting it.

Picking up Your Own Kit

Once enough supporters are gathered, the Lego kit will be set up for production and then sold by Lego in select stores around the world. This is a chance for the creator of the Lego idea to get paid for his creation, and a chance for Volkswagen Golf MK1 fans to get a realistic looking kit that they can enjoy.

Volkswagen Moves to Formula E Racing

October 31, 2016 lacarguy Volkswagen Tags: , , , ,

Most people today realize that electric cars are the vehicles of the future. Innovators like Tesla, Porsche, Mercedez and Volkswagen are starting to push the envelope with what electric cars can do, and that’s something that Audi wants to be a part of as well. That’s exactly why the automaker is moving away from one of the most popular endurance races in the world, the 24 Hours of Le Mans. It’s not that the race isn’t a worthwhile challenge, or that it’s not something that Audi can’t handle, but it’s not the most beneficial venture for an automaker that wants to focus on EV technology. Instead Audi will enter into Formula E.


What is Formula E?

Formula E is a race circuit that allows only full-electric vehicles, and it’s a worthy challenge for any automaker that’s interested in a future with EVs. Since Audi wants to be at the forefront of EV technology in the future, it only makes sense to participate in this type of race, rather than a long-distance endurance race that simply isn’t going to aid in developing the right kind of technology.

How Races Currently Work

Formula E is a much different world from the World Endurance Championship world that Audi is used to. Races that lasted hours at a time, now go by in just minutes in most instances. That’s because most of these electric races are short and sweet. They take place over short tracks that are just a few miles in length, and most races are over within an hour of actual racing.

Getting Started in 2017

Audi plans on releasing its first full EV in 2018, and its participation in Formula E events in 2017 will help test that technology more thoroughly and give the automaker the knowledge and chance for innovation that it needs to create something exciting. While the company plans on having a factory-backed team in the future, it will first start with Team ABT Schaeffler Audi Sport to go through the first season of Formula E.

This is an exciting opportunity for Audi to become a leader in electric technology, and to figure out how to make the very best electric vehicles. It’s a good move for the company, because it fits with the future vision that Audi wants to head in.