Volkswagen is supporting the Vatican City State in its transition towards sustainable mobility. At the beginning of 2024, the company will deliver just under 40 fully electric models from its ID. family, ranging from the ID.3 to the ID.4 and ID.5. The vehicles are part of the decarbonization strategy of the VCS, aiming to make the Vatican fleet climate-neutral by 2030. Imelda Labbé, Member of the Board of Management for Sales, Marketing and After-Sales at Volkswagen Passenger Cars, and Dr. Christian Dahlheim, Chairman of the Board of Management of Volkswagen Financial Services AG, have personally handed over the first two electric vehicles to the Vatican, two ID.3 Pro Performance models.


The Vatican City State is strongly committed to the implementation of innovative and sustainable solutions that make it possible to reduce, in concrete terms, the impact of human activities on the environment in order to protect the planet. Mobility is at the heart of a specific program called "Ecological Conversion 2030", which aims to reduce the CO2 footprint of the state's vehicle fleet. To achieve this, the existing vehicles are to be gradually replaced by electric ones to make the entire fleet CO2-neutral by 2030.

Volkswagen is the chosen partner for this project, and through Volkswagen Financial Services it will supply the Vatican State with a fleet starting from the beginning of 2024. At later stages, further zero-emission vehicles also from the Volkswagen Group brands will be progressively handed over up until the entire fleet has been completely replaced by 2030.

"The electrification of fleets is becoming increasingly important across the globe. The fact that Vatican employees will now also be among our ID. drivers in the future is a great target and honor for our brand and underscores the attractiveness of our all-electric ID. models," said Imelda Labbé during the vehicle handover in Vatican City.

Dr. Christian Dahlheim added: "We are delighted to support the Vatican in this important project. This is something very special for us and shows that we are absolutely competitive with our mobility solutions."

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Volkswagen Financial Services
 are a business division of the Volkswagen AG group of companies and comprise Volkswagen Financial Services AG along with its associated companies, Volkswagen Bank GmbH, Porsche Financial Services, and the financial services companies in the USA and Canada that belong directly or indirectly to Volkswagen AG – with the exception of the financial service business of the Scania brand and of Porsche Holding Salzburg. The key business fields embrace dealer and customer financing, leasing, bank and insurance activities, fleet management and mobility services. Volkswagen Financial Services have a total of 17,713 employees worldwide – including 7,692 alone in Germany. Volkswagen Financial Services report total assets of around EUR 240 billion, an operating profit of EUR 5.60 billion, and a portfolio of around 22.0 million current contracts (as at: 31.12.2022).

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The Volkswagen Passenger Cars brand is present in more than 140 markets worldwide and produces vehicles at 29 locations in twelve countries. In 2022, Volkswagen delivered around 4.6 million vehicles. These include bestsellers such as the Polo, T-Roc, T-Cross, Golf, Tiguan or Passat as well as the successful all-electric models ID.3, ID.4, ID.5 and ID.6. Last year, the company handed over more than 330,000 all-electric vehicles to customers worldwide. Around 170,000 people currently work at Volkswagen worldwide. With its ACCELERATE strategy, Volkswagen is consistently driving forward its development to become the most desirable brand for sustainable mobility.


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Pre-sales for the all-new Tiguan start in Europe today. The third generation of the Volkswagen SUV has been completely redesigned and improved in all areas: new hybrid drives with an all-electric range of around 100 km make this SUV more efficient than ever before. A new and consistently intuitive cockpit landscape brings even more digital services and apps on board. The latest Park Assist generation automates driving into and out of parking spaces. The new adaptive running gear DCC Pro optimises comfort and dynamics. Features like the pneumatic massage function for the front seats and the new IQ.LIGHT HD matrix headlights have been derived from the premium Touareg model. The basic version of the Tiguan with a 96 kW (130 PS) 48 V mild hybrid drive will be available at prices starting from 36,600 euros (in Germany).


New design. The confident design is typically Tiguan and typically Volkswagen but still completely new. A distinctive feature is the higher, more powerful-looking front end. The standard LED headlights are integrated here. In-between, a glass-covered horizontal bar with an optionally integrated LED strip replaces the traditional radiator grille. The Tiguan is optionally available with the new IQ.LIGHT HD matrix headlights; this high-tech lighting system with 38,400 multi-pixel LEDs has been derived from the Touareg. The cleanly designed front highlights the fact that the drag coefficient has improved from 0.33 to 0.28. Athletic shoulder sections above the wheel housings dominate the silhouette. The wheels are up to 20-inch in size. A horizontal LED strip between the tail light clusters emphasises the width of the Tiguan’s new rear end.


Modern cockpit design, based on customer feedback. Volkswagen has also completely redesigned the interior of the Tiguan. With its high-quality materials and high finish standard, it breaks down conventional class boundaries. In addition, the components of the latest modular infotainment matrix (MIB4) are merged on board to create a clearly designed and closely integrated cockpit landscape that is intuitive to operate. The modules include the new Digital Cockpit (digital instruments with anti-reflective coating in tablet landscape format), a large infotainment screen with a completely new menu structure and graphics (standard display: 28.5 x 16.0 cm or 12.9 inches, optionally 33.2 x 18.5 cm or 15 inches), a new head-up display (information projected on the windscreen) and a new multifunction driving experience switch with an integrated OLED display. The new IDA voice assistant can be used to easily operate countless vehicle functions using natural language (such as navigation or air conditioning) or even ask general questions to be answered from the internet.

Efficient drive systems – eHybrid, eTSI, TSI and TDI. The all-new Tiguan will be available with eight different mild hybrid (eTSI), plug-in hybrid (eHybrid), turbocharged petrol (TSI) and turbocharged diesel (TDI) drives. Two new 48 V mild hybrid drives will be available to order straight away; the eTSI drives deliver an output of 96 kW (130 PS) and 110 kW (150 PS) and have automatic Active Cylinder Management (ACT). Both Tiguan eTSI variants combine their high efficiency with excellent moving-off performance. The new Tiguan can also be configured with a TDI engine delivering 110 kW (150 PS) directly from the launch. The other drive versions will be introduced in 2024. These include the newly developed plug-in hybrid drives for the Tiguan with an all-electric range of around 100 km. Thanks to the long electric range and a new DC quick-charging function with up to 50 kW, the eHybrid SUV becomes an electric car in everyday use. All Tiguan models are equipped with an automatic direct shift gearbox (DSG) as standard.

Seats for long journeys. The new optional ergoActive Plus seats with pneumatic four-way lumbar adjustment and a pneumatic 10-chamber pressure massage function are a perfect match for the high-quality character of this SUV. In addition, the seat heating and seat ventilation can be activated automatically – depending on the outside temperature.


The equipment versions at a glance:
Tiguan is the basic version.
 All four equipment versions are available at the start of pre-sales: Tiguan, Life, Elegance and R-Line. The basic Tiguan version is already equipped with standard details such as the new Digital Cockpit, 32.8 cm (12.9-inch) infotainment system, driving experience switch, Car2X warning system, additional centre airbag (front) and side airbags at the rear, one-zone Climatronic (automatic climate control), USB-C ports with 45-watt charging capacity (front), black roof rails and standard assist systems such as Side Assist (lane change assist), Front Assist (emergency braking system), Lane Assist (lane departure warning), Rear View (rear view camera system) and Dynamic Road Sign Display. Also standard are LED headlights and 17-inch alloy wheels.

Life is the middle version. The Tiguan Life includes the following additional features: three-zone Climatronic (Air Care), comfort seats in the front, variable luggage compartment floor, Park Assist Plus (parking assistant), ACC (adaptive cruise control), Light Assist (main-beam control), App Connect (wireless Apple and Android integration), electrically folding exterior mirrors, side surround lighting (illuminated door handles and motif projection from the exterior mirror housings) and 17-inch Venezia alloy wheels.


Elegance and R-Line are the top versions. Compared with Life, the Elegance and R-Line versions have additional equipment details such as LED Plus headlights including a horizontal LED strip at the front and rear, a background lighting package with three light zones and 30 colours, as well as ergoActive front seats with massage function. The Tiguan Elegance is also equipped with an electrically opening and closing boot lid (incl. Easy Open function by foot gesture), Park Assist Plus with memory function, silver-coloured roof rails, seat covers in elegant microfleece, acoustic windows with tinted glass in the rear, a winter package (including seat heating and heated washer nozzles) and 18-inch alloy wheels (Napoli design). In contrast, the Tiguan R-Line is characterised by additional features such as bumpers, roof spoiler and side panels in the R-Line design and a specific R-Line interior with sports seats and 19-inch alloy wheels (Coventry design). The Tiguan R-Line can also be customised with a Black Style Package. Among other things, this includes black 19-inch alloy wheels and black gloss window strips and exterior mirror housings.


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Volkswagen is now opening pre-sales of the visually and technically enhanced T-Cross. The distinctive exterior design of the SUV has been sharpened, and the standard LED headlights and LED tail light clusters are also new. In addition, the vehicle interior features a new dash panel with higher-quality surfaces and a new infotainment system generation. At the same time, Volkswagen has extended the standard equipment of the T-Cross, of which around 1.2 million units have been sold in just three years. The most compact Volkswagen SUV is again characterised by a particularly attractive price/performance ratio. Prices in Germany for the T-Cross start at 23,250 euros. Delivery is planned to start in the first quarter of 2024.


The new T-Cross will be offered with three efficient turbocharged petrol engines (TSI). They deliver 70 kW (95 PS), 85 kW (115 PS) and 110 kW (150 PS) respectively. There is a choice of four equipment lines: T-Cross, Life and the two top-of-the-range versions Style (elegant) and R-Line (sporty). The three colours Grape Yellow, Clear Blue Metallic and Kings Red Metallic are new.


Versatile and spacious for family and leisure. The interior of the T-Cross impresses with its proven operating concept, well-arranged space for up to five people, a rear bench seat that can be moved by 140 mm and an extremely flexible luggage compartment. When all the seats are occupied, the T-Cross offers a luggage compartment capacity of between 385 and up to 455 litres when loaded up to the height of the rear bench seat. When the rear bench seat is folded down (60:40 split), this creates a flat load area with a stowage volume of up to 1,281 litres (loaded up to the height of the front seat backrests). In addition, the front passenger seat backrest can be folded down as standard (from the Life specification and above / only for left-hand drive vehicles). The continuous load area from the rear to the front is then 2,398 mm long and can stow everything from a surfboard to a medium-size ladder.


Increased drawbar load for greater freedom when transporting e-bikes. Volkswagen has significantly increased the drawbar load of the T-Cross from 55 to 75 kg. This additional 20 kg increases the maximum load that can act vertically on the removable ball coupling (optional). The new T-Cross therefore offers greater scope towing a heavy trailer. At the same time, the maximum permitted weight of bicycles that can be transported on a carrier mounted on the ball coupling is also increased – something that is particularly important for transporting e-bikes.

Travel Assist offers significantly improved comfort
The new T-Cross is optionally equipped with Travel Assist for greater longitudinal and lateral vehicle control. Depending on the traffic ahead and the permitted speed, the T-Cross can control the vehicle’s speed with automatic acceleration and braking. Within the system limits, Travel Assist can also include speed limits, bends and roundabouts in its control interventions. At the same time, Lane Assist can help to keep the vehicle in its lane. The new T-Cross can automatically perform stop-and-go operations when fitted with the DSG.

The T-Cross equipment variants:
The significantly enhanced T-Cross base version already includes new features such as LED headlights (instead of halogen), LED tail light clusters, Dynamic Road Sign Display, a Digital Cockpit measuring 20,3 cm (8.0 inches) across the diagonal, a now floating infotainment system display (also with 20.3 cm diagonal), USB-C interfaces and Park Assist at front and rear. The base model of the product line is powered by the 70 kW TSI engine.

The Life version is positioned above this. Here, the new additional equipment details include the 16-inch Nottingham alloy wheels, logo projectors in the exterior mirror housings and smartphone app integration via Mirror Link. The drive power for the T-Cross Life is also provided by the 70 kW TSI engine as standard. The base price for this version in Germany is 25,150 euros.

The top versions Style and R-Line now come as standard with new technologies in the form of the IQ.LIGHT LED matrix headlights (R-Line: standard only in Germany) with cornering and all-weather light functions, offered for the first time in the T-Cross. The new light functions also include welcome and goodbye light animations. Additionally, both top models include as standard new 17-inch alloy wheels in specific designs (“Manila” for Style, “Valencia” for R-Line), exterior background lighting, as well as LED tail light clusters with dynamic turn signal and brake light functions. The new T-Cross Style exudes stylish elegance, while the T-Cross R-Line underlines its sporty character with its R-design bumpers.


The extended infotainment equipment of the two top models include a touch display with a diagonal of 23.4 cm (9.2 inches), the 25.4 cm Digital Cockpit Pro (10 inches), App-Connect for Apple CarPlay and Android Auto (Wireless & Wired) and a mobile phone interface.

Both versions are powered as standard by the 85 kW TSI engine (with seven-speed DSG). The T-Cross Style is available in Germany from 29,465 euros, the T-Cross R-Line from 30,740 euros. The Life, Style and R-Line versions can be optionally ordered with the powerful 110 kW TSI Evo2 engine, which is delivered as standard in combination with a seven-speed DSG.


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The German ADAC, Europe's largest automobile association, gives the ID.3 a good report card. The engineers at the Test and Technology Center in Landsberg am Lech have already covered more than 100,000 kilometers. The most important finding: the high-voltage battery still has a net capacity of 93 percent. An ID.3 Pro S with 77 kWh net battery energy content was tested for which Volkswagen, as for all other models in the ID. family, guarantees that the battery still has at least 70 percent of its original net capacity after eight years in operation or 160,000 kilometers of driving.


The ADAC testers did not spare the battery. To reach the 100,000 kilometer mark as quickly as possible, the ID.3 was often charged to 100 percent at fast charging stations. In addition, contrary to the recommendation, the vehicle was usually ready for the next tester at the charging station with a 100 percent charge level, sometimes for several days.

The endurance test is the first of its kind for a vehicle of the ID. family. Between test drives, the ID.3 was repeatedly checked by engineers at the Landsberg am Lech Test and Technical Center. The ADAC examines eight main criteria and more than 300 sub-criteria - ranging from technology and safety to handling, ease of operation and environmental impact.

The ADAC has a clear recommendation for customers: Software updates should always be installed. During the endurance test, the ID.3 received several software updates. In addition to various bug fixes, the updates brought, among other things, an increase in charging power up to 170 kW. The updates also had a positive effect on consumption and thus range. In particular, the new software significantly improved power consumption over short distances and winter temperatures of 0 to 5° C.

The intelligent Electric Vehicle Route Planner, which the ID.3 also received via an update, is also praised by the ADAC testers. On a longer route, it plans the charging stops in such a way that the destination is reached as quickly as possible. In addition to the battery's state of charge, the system also takes into account the current traffic situation and forecasts. The charging stops are evaluated dynamically and are based on the performance of the pillars. As a result, route planning can suggest two short charging stops with high power instead of a single long one with low power.


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Under the motto “Coming Home – Reloaded”, Wolfsburg will become the new home for the GTI fan community next summer: The legendary meetup will take place in the vicinity of the VfL Wolfsburg stadium from July 26 – 28, 2024 and will be organized in cooperation with the Autostadt. In addition to vehicle presentations, stage shows and club meets, there will be many other activities and surprises for GTI enthusiasts.


As Imelda Labbé, Member of the Board of Management for Sales, Marketing and After Sales at Volkswagen Passenger Cars, explained: “The GTI isn’t the only icon – the GTI Meeting has also acquired cult status over the decades. We feel it’s important to give the GTI community a new home at the heart of our brand here in Wolfsburg!” Volkswagen is giving fans plenty of time to make their plans by announcing the date early: The big GTI party will be held on the last weekend in July 2024.

GTI – these three letters have stood for sportiness, emotions and dynamics for almost half a century. The fan community all over the world is still growing today and the cult brand enthusiasts meet regularly in clubs and exchange information with one another in GTI communities. Since 1982, the largest GTI meetup has traditionally taken place at Lake Wörthersee in Austria. However, in early 2023 the Maria Wörth local municipality announced that it would no longer host the annual event. Volkswagen therefore decided to bring the GTI Meeting home to Wolfsburg. Official GTI meets – complementing the Lake Wörthersee events – were already held outside the gates of the Volkswagen factory back in 2017 and 2018.

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