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The history of the Volkswagen Group.

The history of the Volkswagen Group (Volkswagen) dates back to 1934, when the opening of the Berlin Motor Show, Adolf Hitler called for automakers to create a vehicle of economic class, that would be affordable for everyone. Hitler believed that a car of this class should be a four-seater, driving at a speed of 100 km / h and still spend less than 7 liters of petrol per 100 km, and the cost of such a car should not more than 1000 DM. But automakers were slow to take on this project, as this project is already at first glance seemed unprofitable and none of the plants are not undertaken for this project. Still, there was a man who was able to cope with this, at first glance seeming impossible task - the man was a German engineer and designer Ferdinand Porsche. Porsche during the 4 years on the implementation of the first "people's car" (volkswagen in German - "volk" - people, "wagen" - a car.)

The German designer from the initial design, not all goes well, originally the studio of Ferdinand Porsche created the prototypes "Beetle" with a 2-stroke economical engine, but later they were replaced by four-cylinder horizontally opposed air-cooled engine. Prototypes of the V3 in the tests could take more than 50 thousand km, which eliminated the major drawbacks, one of which was overheating engine. A year later was made a pilot batch model V30, the volume of which was 30 cars that before launching into production were to be 2.5 million kilometers.

In 1938, in an article in New York Times - Volkswagen (VW) has been called "bug" for its resemblance to these insects. And in May 1938, construction began on the largest European factory Volkswagen. But due to the outbreak of the Second World War, the construction of the Volkswagen were suspended, and the unfinished plant was converted for the production of military products. After the war, the Volkswagen factory, located in Wolfsburg, was in the British zone of occupation. In 1945, the British government ordered the plant to manufacture 20,000 cars, 2 years export exhibition held in Hanover, where the "Beetle" has attracted a lot of attention. In 1947, Volkswagen has received an order from the Netherlands for 1000 cars, and a year later there were orders from Belgium, Sweden, Switzerland and other countries.

In early 1948 there was a change in leadership Volkswagen, general director was Heinrich Nordhoff. The new guidance was provided by certified engineers who have had experience at the car and were able to think outside the box. Thanks to their arrival the car was substantially upgraded and improved.

In 1949 he started producing models with the new body style (limousine and sedan), at the same time, a network of service stations and engineering stations servicing cars Volkswagen. Continued efforts to attract Western customers, and to the end of 1948, the export of cars was about 50,000 vehicles in the domestic market and has sold about 15,000 vehicles.

September 6, 1949 Volkswagen factory was handed over to the Federal Republic of Germany. By 1950, there were issued 100 thousand cars a year - 500 thousand cars, and was released on August 5 millionth car.

Affordable price and proven reliability over the years have become important factors that increase the export capacity car brand Volkswagen. Abroad one after another opened subsidiaries in 1953 - in Brazil, in 1956 - in South Africa, in 1957 - in Australia, in 1964 - in Mexico and other countries.

The first modification of the Volkswagen -1200 - was a sports coupe Karmann-Ghia. Italian company "Ghia" worked to create the project of this compartment, and the assembly was carried out by the German firm body "Karmann".

In 1961, there was Volkswagen-1500, which had a large capacity engine and the sedan. In 1965, Volkswagen acquired from "Daimler-Benz" firm Audi, and so was born the concern VAG (Volkswagen-Audi), and later in this concern also includes the Czech plant "Skoda" (Skoda) and the Spanish firm "SEAT" (SEAT).

In 1968, there was VW-411, equipped with air-cooled engine, the working volume of which amounted to 1679 cc In 1969 came the first Volkswagen K-70 with front wheel drive, and the buyer could buy a car with an engine displacement of 1594 cc and 1795

In the years 1969-1975 in co-operation with the company Porsche sports cars produced Volkswagen-Porsche-914 with 4 and 6-cylinder engines, the working volume of which was in 1679 and 1991 cc In 1970, VW-181 appeared to have a public body.

The ancestor is a new generation of front-wheel drive Volkswagen VW Passat, which rolled out in 1973. There were several versions of this model, as proposed vehicles with engine capacity of 1297 to 1588 cc A year later came sporty VW Scirocco with engines from 1093 to 1588 cc and with 3-door coupe. At the same time there was a compact 3-and 5-door hatchback VW Golf. In 1979 he appeared convertible Golf. In just 30 months of release from the conveyor hatchback VW Golf was able to produce and implement more than one million cars.

First model VW Golf (Golf I) has been very successful, thanks to its reliability and efficiency. It should be noted that during the development of new models of the 1973-1974 Volkswagen has spent more than 800 million marks, but these losses have been covered already in 1975 due to the high demand for these machines. In 1983 he was promoted Golf II, and in 1991 was born Golf III. Until 1996, it was released about 17 million cars VW Golf from different generations.

In 1997 he made his debut Golf IV, and in the first days after the debut of the Volkswagen received more than 60,000 orders for this model of car.

In 1975, the debut of "little brother" Golf - 3-door front-Polo, which was similar in design to the car Audi-50.

Reliable and inexpensive Polo also found a niche in the automotive market and has become very popular.

Since 1980, based on the Golf began production of the Jetta, has a 4-door sedan. In 1992, the Jetta model has been replaced by a similar machine, but the chassis Golf III, and this model is called Volkswagen Vento.

In 1981, the Scirocco and Passat have been upgraded, and in 1992, based on the VW Passat sedan appeared Santana, which was equipped with a 5-cylinder gasoline engine with a displacement of 1994 cc

Since 1993, the company launched production model Variant station wagon and convertible on the chassis of the third generation machines. Variant Syncro models made with the 2.0 and 2.9-liter engines and have all-wheel drive chassis.

Polo model third generation began producing in 1994. Body 3 and 5-door hatchback, Polo Classic sedan and 5-door hatchback VW Variant. Petrol engines and diesel 4-cylinder displacement of 1.0-1.9 liters capacity 50-101 hp Comfortable family Vento is equipped with the first generation of 4 and 6-cylinder engines in the 1.6-2.8 liter capacity of 75-174 hp

Since 1995, began production of 5 and 7-seater wagon Sharan, front wheel drive and all-wheel drive to the chassis. Diesel and gasoline engines have a working volume of 1.9-2.8 liters.

Production models of the fifth-generation Passat was launched in 1996, these cars were unified Audi A4 and Audi A6, allowing use in the Volkswagen Audi powerful powertrains longitudinal location.

Several companies of the Volkswagen in Argentina, Brazil, China and Mexico produce models that differ from European models, and these models of Gol (Gol), Parati (Paraty) and Santana (Santana), produced at the chassis models Passat and Golf. Mexican subsidiary produces model "Beetle" (1.6i) with the 1.6-liter engine, and in 1998 began the production front wheel drive car Beetle (Beetle) chassis models Golf. In 1998, debuted a mini-model sedan Lupo and Bora.

Currently, Volkswagen has factories in 15 countries and produces its cars under well-known brands including Audi, SEAT, Skoda, Volkswagen, and in 1998, the Group owned brand Rolls-Royce, Bentley, Bugatti and Lamborghini.

In late 2000, the opening of the Wolfsburg Autostadt Volkswagen, which is a combination amusement park and the customer service center. Almost all available Volkswagen brand are the Autostadt, and at the end of 2002, there were already nine brands.
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