When VW's new Jetta hit the market, many in the media lamented that fact that the German automaker had sacrificed interior quality in the name of achieving a lower price point. The same could be said for the new Passat, which debuted a few months later. However, Jae Min, chief designer-group interior at VW's Design Center California, says VW didn't cut corners in either car.
"We didn't take (cost) out,"¯ Min told WardsAuto. "We just rebalanced where (the money was spent). We moved it from here to there."¯
He added: "Whatever was taken out went right back in."¯
We find Min's words hard to believe - especially considering VW clearly cut costs in other areas, such as the Jetta's beam rear axle - but the strategy certainly has worked. Jetta sales increased 43.9 percent last year and Passat sales were up a whopping 80.9 percent. Moreover, transaction prices have remained steady for both models, despite a drop is starting MSRP.