Speaking to Automotive News Europe, Harald Mueller, president of Jetta, said the brand achieved 1% market share among new cars sold in China. Part of this success would come from customers looking for cheap alternatives to public transportation because of the coronavirus crisis that hit the Asian country first.
“Of course, the successful start has created interest in other markets in the Volkswagen world,” Mueller told Automotive News Europe.
Like Nissan and Datsun, which has been recreated to be a cheap brand, Jetta intends to offer the cheapest models on the Chinese market, where other Volkswagen Group names (such as Skoda) are little recognized. Currently, Jetta works with the VA3 sedan and the VS5 and VS7 crossovers. The VA3 is a version of the past generation of the Jetta sedan, but with a deep update. The VS5 and VS7 are based on the Seat Ateca and Tarraco models, respectively – cousins of the Volkswagen Tiguan and Tiguan Allspace.
Apart from Mueller’s somewhat vague statement, there is no further confirmation that Jetta will expand outside of China. If you do, we look forward to entering countries like Russia and perhaps the rest of Asia: the Philippines, Indonesia, Thailand and the like. It remains to be seen whether Jetta will be able to avoid the same fate as Datsun, which is about to be extinguished by Nissan’s need to cut spending.
Jetta should not appear in Europe or in the United States. Americans are no longer in the habit of buying vehicles so simple and Skoda already fulfills the role of being a cheaper alternative to Volkswagen models. And in Brazil, would such a brand be successful? Since 2017 we have heard stories about how VW would have a more affordable sub-brand for emerging markets and that Brazil was on the list, but given the country’s current situation, the chances of seeing Jetta cars here are very small.