The very first all-new 2015 Golf — a red five-door GTI model — rolled off the line at VW’s plant in Puebla, Mexico today. Going forward, the facility will supply Golfs and other Golf family models (such as the Golf Wagon, Jetta, Beetle, etc.) for the North American region, with the new compact hatch launching in the U.S. in mid-2014.
“The start of Golf 7 production will give Volkswagen a big boost in the North America region”, said Volkswagen CEO Prof Dr. Martin Winterkorn in a celebratory event commemorating the start of production in Puebla.
The seventh iteration of the popular Golf, which was named the 2013 World Car of the Year, is based on VW’s intelligent lightweight vehicle architecture known as MQB (translated from German as the Modular Transverse Toolkit/Matrix).
During the course of the year, Puebla will also build derivates of the Golf, such as the Golf station wagon for the North and South America regions. The plant, which has a production capacity of 700 vehicles per working day, currently builds the coupe and cabriolet versions of the Volkswagen Beetle as well as the Volkswagen Jetta. All models will migrate to the MQB architecture “in the medium term”, according to a VW news release.
As the Puebla plant satisfies North American demand for the new Golf, Volkswagen has been manufacturing the modern TSI engine at its Silao engine plant in Mexico since early 2013. The vehicles built in Puebla and the engines produced in Silao are built to VW’s state-of-the-art environmental standards of the brand’s “Think Blue. Factory.” program, which “aims to optimize resource efficiency at all Volkswagen plants and to continually improve the environmental compatibility of the production process.” To note, the Puebla plant satisfies North and South American demand for the Golf, while international demand is served by factories in Europe and Asia. In addition to the Mexico-based Silao and Puebla operations, the Volkswagen Auto Group is building an Audi production facility in San José Chiapa. The plant, which will be Audi’s first manufacturing facility in North America, is scheduled to begin production in 2016 and will strengthen the VW Auto Group’s production network in North America.