Wolfsburg, Germany - Volkswagen wants to differentiate its brands more clearly, with Spanish brand Seat moving more upmarket to compete with Alfa Romeo, while Czech brand Skoda will focus more on the budget end of the market, Automotive News Europe reports.
Volkswagen’s product strategy boss Michael Jost told the publication’s sister title Automobilwoche that the company was “taking a very close look at possible overlaps in the product portfolios of all brands,” and that it was aiming to manage its brand identities “more clearly in future.”
"Seat could represent even more emotional cars, as exemplified by its Cupra models. Skoda could serve eastern Europe markets more intensively, as well as customers seeking functionality even more intensively," Jost added.
According to Automotive News Europe, the Seat brand would chase Alfa Romeo with products that are more upmarket and exciting, and this would ultimately make them more expensive than Volkswagen-branded products.
Interestingly, Volkswagen tried to position Seat above Volkswagen in South Africa when the brand made a brief entrance here 13 years ago, but the plan backfired because the cars were actually positioned below VW products in the rest of the world.