We had recently published a report on discontinuation of Toyota’s Etios & Liva (here). Both Etios and Liva were Made-in-India models considering the market requirement and research done by Toyota at that time. Toyota also had aspirations of supplying both Etios & Liva to developing countries as well.
Similar to Toyota; VW too wanted to launch an India-specific model basis the domestic demand. VW was influenced by the success of Dzire and explored the Polo platform and gave birth to the sub-4m avatar of the compact sedan, naming it Ameo in 2016. It was made in India and sold in the subcompact sedan segment, marketed with the tagline “German engineering with an Indian heart”. The Ameo was the first ever sub four metre segment sedan from Volkswagen, plugging in the gap between two other offerings in India, being the Polo and the Vento. The word ‘Ameo’ was derived from the Latin word ‘amo’, meaning love. This went against Volkswagen’s traditional naming language that uses names of winds. However; VW’s experiment didn’t work in its favor and the model could sell only 47,146 units in the past 45 months. Just for comparison – Dzire sold 8,27,236 units in the same timeline! Let’s see the sales trend of Ameo over the years –
VW Ameo was launched in the Indian market on 5th June 2016. The model sold 12,863 units in the first year of launch; and average a sale of 2,143 units/mth (July-Dec timeline).
Ameo sold 17,528 units in 2017 – But the average fell to 1,460 units/mth.
The downward spiral didn’t stop and VW Ameo volumes have been falling every year since and the German manufacturer finally decided to axe the model from its portfolio.
The BS6 & CAFE norms has been tough on many manufacturers and the OEMs have discontinued a lot of non-viable models from their respective portfolios. The intent is to make their lineup lean and also make way for newer models. Hope VW emerges with much stronger and well researched models in their kitty.