In a media roundtable at the Chicago Auto Show, Hein Schafer, Volkswagen's senior vice president of product marketing and strategy, revealed that the slow-selling Volkswagen Arteon will be getting a moderate facelift at the "back end of this year."
Schafer said we can expect minor updates like new light signatures and updated wheel designs. But he also said the Arteon will get some "cool enhancements" for the interior, as the only negative things VW took away from reviews were about the cabin. He didn't go into specifics, beyond saying it's getting "a very nice, new interior," which will likely mean upgraded materials and a new dashboard design. A fresh infotainment system could be in store, too.
Schafer admits that part of the reason for this facelift is that VW did the car a disservice when it came to marketing. "It's definitely better than 400 units a month," so the plan is to increase marketing for the car and give it a proper backing to get more butts in seats. "If you're not spending $90 million to get the car out the door and the marketing on the street, it becomes quite tough." VW has had a lot more money to spend on marketing for bigger sellers such as the Atlas and Jetta, and the Arteon's luxury competitors also have more available incentives.
Don't forget, the Arteon also went on sale in Europe back in 2017, a full two years before it arrived in the US. That doesn't necessarily make this an emergency refresh by any means, it just seems so in the US because of our delayed launch timing.
When asked about the possibility of the oft-rumored Arteon shooting brake wagon coming to the US, Schafer said it's something the brand is considering. Schafer said it all depends on numbers, and that VW is still doing volume studies to see if a premium wagon like that would make sense. We sure hope it will.