JANUARY 2013 will resonate with Volkswagen and Jamaica for more reasons than one; the most popular XVII Super Bowl ad featuring a Jamaican accent and the month in which for the first time the brand took the number two spot in new car sales in the country, according to figures released by the Automobile Dealers Association (ADA).
Outsold only by Toyota, this remarkable feat comes just weeks ahead of the opening of the new sophisticated Volkswagen showroom on Oxford Road being built by exclusive dealer ATL Automotive.
"What a way to start the year. It is an awesome time for Volkswagen in Jamaica. We delivered 59 units in January which represented an overall 13.3 per cent of the market. It has taken us two years to get to this point, having held the number three and four spots on different occasions so we are elated. Volkswagen wants to be number one in the world by 2018 and we are playing our role in helping to fulfil that dream because we believe in the brand wholeheartedly and proudly position it as the best value for money on the road," said Brand Manager, Adam Harris.
Market Analyst Sloane Jackson attributes VW's gains to the increased sales of the Tiguan compact SUV, which had its biggest showing ever with 20 units, outselling all other compact SUVs sold by competitors.
"With 210 horse power and going from 0 to 60km in 6.9 seconds, the Tiguan is the fastest and most powerful compact SUV in the market. This is a vehicle that is coming into its own in the Jamaican market and people in search of a practical, compact SUV to do the daily rounds as well as go off- road are beginning to look at this vehicle. A $4.1M starting price and the addition of one year's free service package also sweetened the deal," he explained. The popular Amarok pick-up followed closely with 15 units.
Reflecting on 2012, the Adam Harris pointed out that for the second consecutive year, the Amarok was the number one selling pick-up in the country. "Jamaicans fell in love with the Amarok as soon as it landed in December 2010 and they rushed the dealership in 2011 to get their hands on it; the result of which was the number one spot by year end. The excitement around this outstanding pick-up continued in 2012 when we delivered 190 units to the market. The opening of the new showroom will further leverage these gains as we continue to present Unbeatable offers, so we know it will be a fantastic 2013," said Mr Harris.
Ground was broken in January 2012 for the Volkswagen showroom which stands next to the Audi showroom on Oxford Road in January 2012, both being built at a cost of US$13M, the largest investment by any automotive dealer in Jamaica. One amazing feature of the first world VW showroom will be the configurator wall which will allow customers to touch and view the models up close, the texture of the upholstery, the paint options, and more detailed information on the features. VW fanatics will also be thrilled by the gift shop which will feature branded paraphernalia as well as vehicle accessories.
Meanwhile, ATL Automotive continues to hold the number two spot in new car sales with 28.8 per cent of the overall market.