Click above for a high-res gallery of the up!
Volkswagen's NSF (new small family) concepts, the up! series, has been on our radar since appearing at auto shows in late 2007. Last fall, VW committed to bringing these vehicles to production models, and we heard that the leading candidate for a production site was the Škoda factory in Vrchlabi, in the Czech Republic because the up! production versions are supposed to be low cost vehicles. Automotive News Europe (subs req'd) is reporting that some engineers at VW group members Škoda and SEAT are worried that the components in the up! would be too expensive for them to sell. Axles, transmissions and engines will be the same throughout the NSF range; the differences will be in body styles and price tags. The VW group is hoping to sell a half-million of these NSF vehicles a year, and low-cost versions are pretty vital to that strategy. The Volkswagen up! should be on sale in late 2010. An Audi up! makes a lot more sense now as a way to recoup costs.
[Source: Automotive News Europe (subs req'd)]