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VW vs. Mercedes & Audi vs. BMW

In message <3188d17c.34629d29@aol.com> Audial writes:

> Gentlemen, vent your spleen.

> "Ferdinand Piech, the chairman of Volkswagen and Audi, has ambitious goals:
>   'The target brand for Audi is BMW.' he stated the other day.  After a pause
> he added:  'And VW will take on Mercedes-Benz.'


> Piech is making a bold move doing this. You and I might remember VW as a
> little, technologically-simple car, but in the US it is a <German> car that is
> very well made.  I don't think the "volks" they are looking for are the same
> "volks" they had in mind at the beginning, ...

The traditional positioning - Audi high, VW low - with good build quality has 
been upset with SEAT and Skoda entering VW's stable.  Both have historically 
had poor reputations - in the UK, Skoda used to _define_ the low end of the 
market.  E.g.:
What do you call a Skoda with twin exhausts?   A wheelbarrow.
Why do Skodas have heated rear screens?  So your hands don't freeze when 

These two brands, as VW improves them, will naturally come to occupy the space 
previously owned by VW.  Commercially, within Germany, VW is a respected 
economic force and can manage the migration to a quality/luxury marque.

 Phil Payne
 Committee Member, UK Audi [ur-]quattro Owners Club