In my last blog on this subject, 2009 VW ROUTAN.. Sheep in Wolfsburg clothing?, this whole rebadging thing has been bugging me. I work in a European car (Saab) dealership and here is how I see what this means to them.
The mechanics that work there have probably been doing VW’s for most of their working lives. There are some gypsy mechanics , but for the most part, you make the best money when you know the product well, and that usually takes years. These guys are immersed in VW culture, including how their manuals are written and how their tools work.
Now, here comes the Chrysler minivan…. along with it comes a huge pile of tools (none of which work on their normal cars) and computer manuals (none of which translates to how they have learned to do things) and scan tools (none of which will also work on their normal cars, or even work the same).
So now these guys are the guys that are going to service your new minivan. They obviously have mechanical skills or they wouldn’t be working there. So they will get rushed training to quickly get up to speed, and here comes the new minivan on friday at 4:50 pm with a check engine light on, and a customer who wants it taken care of quickly and be on his way. Good Luck!
So, in the end, this minivan thing will go on for a few years, it will never really generate enough sales to keep it going, and VW and Chrysler will eventually drop it. The few cars that they made will drift back to Chrysler dealers or independents to be fixed. If there is a market for a VW minivan, and they engineered their own, it could have been a contender…