The Golf will no longer set Volkswagen's design direction.

The next generation of Volkswagen's range-topping Phaeton will inaugurate a new design language that will be gradually applied to all of the firm's sedans.

Speaking with England's Auto Express magazine, Volkswagen design director Klaus Bischoff admitted that modeling every member of the company's lineup regardless of size and market segment after the Golf was not a particularly good idea.

"Flagship models like the Phaeton should act as halo products and influence the way the other cars in the range look, rather than the other way round," explained Bischoff in an interview.

Which direction the new design will take is not currently known but we expect it to be an evolution of current styling cues rather than a revolution.

In recent years, Volkswagen has often been criticized for having a lineup of cars, vans and SUVs that all look more or less the same. This is slated to change as the automaker is seeking ways to differentiate its products.

"In the future, there will be a specific look for saloons, one for our SUVs, one for the people carriers and one for our hatchbacks," said Bischoff.

The Wolfsburg-based automaker's design overhaul will bear its first fruits when the next Phaeton makes its debut in 2014.