Fleet News

April date for first Passats

VOLKSWAGEN will start taking orders for the delayed Passat next January in anticipation of delivering the first UK spec right hand drive cars in April. The production hiccup reported last week is apparently due to compatibility problems between bulkhead and right hand drive components and production is now scheduled to start in January.

Volkswagen moved quickly to reassure fleet customers they will get their cars as soon as possible and has managed to secure right hand drive availability of all models except the V6 and estate from April. The Passat was due to be launched on December 2 and national fleet sales manager Vince Kinner said demand for the car - especially from the fleet sector - was unprecedented.

Initially, only the 1.6 petrol and two TDi engines were destined for the UK, but now the 1.8 and 2.3 VR5 petrol units will also be available for April delivery. Leasing companies confirmed the high level of interest the Passat is attracting but last week's announcement has prompted a debate over whether fleet operators will be prepared to wait another three to four months for the car.

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