• Apr 16, 2008
click on the above image to view a high-res gallery of the VW GX3

Ferdinand Peich, the Chairman of Volkswagen, wishes that the German automaker had purchased Ducati all the way back in 1985 when the iconic Italian motorcycle marque was experiencing financial troubles and was for sale. "I would still like a small, valuable motorcycle manufacturer," says the 71-year-old Peich, who rides a Ducati himself. Considering the close ties that Volkswagen has with Porsche, which helped create Harley-Davidson's sportiest models, we could imagine some amazing two-wheeled creations rolling out of Wolfsburg. In fact, there's a certain three-wheeler called the GX3 that we'd love to see back in the product pipeline ASAP.


[Source: Automotive News - sub. req'd]


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  • 14 Comments
      • 6 Years Ago
      What if authenticity had a radical edge?
      • 6 Years Ago
      Yeah, Thats becuase the new Ducati's are some sick bikes... The 1098 is unreal...
      • 6 Years Ago
      I think a lot of us gear-heads...as gas prices rises we would like to consider taking other alternative modes of transportation (riding motorcycles and etc.) to work-leisure...

      Volkswagen's new GX3 Concept looks like a great vehicle/commuter...the view of the sunset from the driver's seat would make any gear-head smile endlessly at the horizon. : )

      However, I think there are some safety concerns if the manufacturers do decide to build it. The Volkswagen's GX3 Concept low center of gravity is not suitable for some of today's roads...(Big 18 wheelers may have a difficult time viewing it...hmmm, is that object closer than it appears???)

      Perhaps, the Volkswagen's GX3 Concept can be implemented in film making...amazing cinematograhpy photo shots!
      • 6 Years Ago
      Very easy to do for Volkswagen.
      There could be two possible ways to get a motorcycle manufacturer:

      1.Expand the Audi/KTM partnership and buy KTM

      2.Revive the NSU brand as motorcycle manufacturer. They were known for wonderful German motorcycles that could compete well with any BMW and everyone else.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Re-badging a Dodge/Chrysler Caravan as a VW should automatically disqualify you from being able to own a motorcycle manufacturer.
      • 6 Years Ago
      PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE build the GX3. I saw it in LA a few years back. If they sold it around 17k like they were talking about it would sell faster than they could build them. You could have a lightning fast vehicle that gets 45mpg and is (arguably) safer than a bike. Sounds like the perfect commuter to me!
      • 6 Years Ago
      Just one small correction.
      Porsche did indeed work with HD on the VRod, but this range is NOT the sdportiest range HD produces. It's sorta mid range sporty.
      The Buell brand is used by HD for their real road burners. The latest has an 1125cc VTwin engine specced by HD and built by Rotax.
      http://www.motorcycle-usa.com/Article_Page.aspx?ArticleID=5256
      HotRodzNKustoms
      • 6 Years Ago
      I actually offered to buy both the GX3 prototypes that I knew of (one was for show and Lotus had the other doing suspension tuning) from VW, but they turned me down sighting legal concerns.

      I do hope they manage to someday build the GX3 since Defiant who hoped to purchase the project and build the GX3 seems dead.
      • 6 Years Ago
      and dont get me wrong, I think we need to be thinking minimalist to get better energy/fuel mileage out of whatever source we go with but I havent seen anything that stands out for 3 wheels that makes economic sense.
      • 6 Years Ago
      the problem with any of these trikes is building a value prop to justify them. they are not full cars and they are more than bikes.

      it will always be a niche vehicle until you can get 4 season use. 50K for a Trex when you can get an Elise for the same?



        • 6 Years Ago
        I agree with you on the value proposition of a Lotus Elise versus a T-Rex. But, the GX3 was targeted for a $18,000 sticker price and had considerable input from Lotus Engineering. It would have been awesome if VW had the fortitude to put it into production.
        • 6 Years Ago
        But the GX3, as well as most other trikes, aren't 3-wheelers because that's the optimal layout, they're 3-wheelers because of the way the DOT classifies vehicles in the US. They don't care how much/how little it weighs or what it's safety features are, if it only has 3 wheels, it's a "motorcycle".

        Once you ad the fourth wheel, you have to have things like crash testing and air bags (unless, of course, you sell it as a kit car).
        • 6 Years Ago
        I worked on the Can-am Spyder launch last year and production is sold out for the fore seeable future. So I do not think the the lack of a value prop is a valid issue. They really are more of a fun toy and the 15k to 18k thresholdis where most "toy" purchases land. ie: high end motorcycles, PWCs, and seasonality issues aside if it is something that people can do and feel safe while having fun then it tends to sell its self. With the conomic slowdown ongoing it will be to see hwo the "toy" market fairs but its a shame most people only use the bikes and spyders toys as they can be a fun way to commute and run errands while saving fuel.
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