• Jan 13, 2011
Ask a car guy what a fender is and he'll point to the front corners of a car. A musician, meanwhile, will show you his guitar. (A sailor will toss a rubber bumper over the side, but that's neither here nor there.) But now the two are coming together as reports indicate that the iconic guitar company is getting into the auto industry.

Well, almost. That'd be one bridge too far, but they are closing the divide by developing car stereos. The project is reportedly being undertaken with Panasonic, and developed specifically for Volkswagen.

The Fender-Panasonic systems will reportedly be deployed first on the Jetta, then the New Beetle and finally the new Tennessee-built Passat. Whether the VWs carrying the new audio systems will be special editions with unique "fender badges" remains to be seen.

[Source: Automotive News – subs. req'd]


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  • 35 Comments
      • 4 Years Ago
      Can I get a car without all the excessive electronics? No electric windows. No computer screen. No electric key. No electric sunroof - or any sunroof for that matter. No electric outside mirrors. No electric seats - just good manually adjustable ones. No hot stuff radio/stereo - keep it basic.

      I'll keep the headlights, etc., but you get my drift.

      How great that would be.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Wonder if it will better than the Moonson system in my VW. Wonder if they are using Pansonic or a different brand speakers for the cars.
      • 4 Years Ago
      The sound that will come out of the speakers is TOTALLY going to look like a previous-generation Kiundai Camrycord. And VW’s stereos NEVER work anyway, like the one in my girlfriend’s brother’s co-worker’s neighbor’s 1996 Jetta with 275,000 miles.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Panasonic makes the cheapest speakers on the planet. It will be the same speakers as then base system and then VW will slap a Fender or whatever badge in the door and call it a premium system.

      Consumers today aren't fooled by this anymore. People know what a good system should sound like.
        • 4 Years Ago
        For the most part, people really dont know what they're getting, especially kids my age. they think something has great sound if it sounds like crap with a ton of bass, they'll throw 800w of subs in with a stock headunit and speakers. I did a full boston acoustics setup, amped speakers, g510 sub. Only when people heard mine next to theirs, did they realize that their audio sounded like trash.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Didn't they already do this a few years ago? Why is it big news? Why doesn't VW bring back the crayola cars. I still see one in my area.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Interesting how these companies are thinking outside their territories to create new products.
      Marshall has gone into small headphones:

      http://www.engadget.com/2011/01/11/marshall-minor-earphones-now-available-to-buy-and-to-own/
      • 4 Years Ago
      Bleh. I don't see changing from Dynaudio to Panasonic as "progress."
        • 4 Years Ago
        It seems, afterall, that I wasnt the only one thinking that.
        • 4 Years Ago
        It actually is. Don't knock it til you try it. I am an acoustic engineer at Panasonic and have heard all these cars. They sound pretty amazing, and the audio is infinitely better than the system in my MKV GTI.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Amen to that.
      • 4 Years Ago
      I hope their marketing people read this feedback because I like VW. The only person who had something positive to say was the guy who works at Panasonic. It's just a gimic to fool the customer into thinking they are getting more than they actually aren't.

      Unfortunately VW is headed down the cheap path. I wonder what else they are cheapening up.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Do we get tube based systems? That would be awesome!
      • 4 Years Ago
      Just no instrument playing while driving plzz.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Hang on...have to check on something...


      ...yup. The new Jetta and Passat are still boring.
      • 4 Years Ago
      I am still in love with the monsoon system in my 03 Passat GLS. Clarity at all volume levels is difficult to do in a car with all the background noise and the Monsoon does it. As someone who sits in Boston traffic every day, a good stereo is something that is a MUST HAVE on any car purchase.

      My friends 09 GTI "upgraded" stereo sounds terrible by comparison. No bass, no midrange, all treble.

      Terrible.

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