Ulrich Hackenberg, Volkswagen's chief of research and development, announced that the retro-styled Bulli van that debuted as a concept at last year's Geneva Motor Show has been cancelled, burying a long-standing rumor that it claimed it was scheduled to hit showrooms by 2014.
Hackenberg explained that Volkswagen was not able to make a sound business case for the Bulli because there was simply not enough demand for it in Europe and in the United States, the two markets that the van was tentatively aimed at.
Instead of the Bulli, Volkswagen will focus on building a sub-Tiguan SUV That will be roughly the same size as Audi's upcoming entry-level Q2. It is expected to make its debut in Europe before the middle of the decade.
Hackenberg also indicated that the mid-engined Bluesport roadster which has been lurking on the backburner for several years has been put on an indefinite hiatus. The chief of R&D explained that launching a budget sports car in a depressed auto market is too big of a risk to take.
Unlike the Bulli, the Bluesport still has a fighting chance at seeing the light that awaits at the end of a production line. Volkswagen will reportedly reconsider its decision if there is enough demand for the roadster when Europe's auto industry makes a full recovery.