From the racetrack to high-tech
More than 300,000 customers have chosen high-performance vehicles from Volkswagen R in 20 years. There are more than 6.5 million registered followers on social media channels. Current demand and the success of the past two decades show that, since it launched in 2002, Volkswagen R has successfully established itself as a premium performance brand – on the market and within the Group. The performance-enhanced and refined series production vehicles with their own unique design are a mainstay in Volkswagen’s model portfolio – and will remain so in the future. Volkswagen R is realigning itself with the #WayToZero strategy and transforming itself into an all-electric premium performance brand by 2030. To continue its success story, Volkswagen R is gradually converting its portfolio, with several electric R models in the planning stages. We are currently assessing various concepts and possibilities but will only offer R models that meet our requirements. One thing is certain: the future of R is electric.
The core elements of the R brand are quality, suitability for everyday use, design and innovative technology as well as sustainable performance and a love of the extraordinary. With its transformation into an all-electric brand, the R customer experience is set to become even more intense. Surveys have revealed that 85 percent of Volkswagen R customers are extremely interested in electric mobility.
Volkswagen R will continue to develop all of its models on the racetrack. When translating driving pleasure and agility to electric drive systems, cooperation with racing drivers remains essential – after all, motor racing is part of the premium performance brand’s DNA. With the switch to fully electric powertrains, the combination of everyday usability and emotive driving pleasure will be joined by quick and convenient charging as key elements in the new DNA of Volkswagen R models.
An emotive experience and high product substance
We have seen what modern fully electric performance cars are capable of. With the electric ID.R sports car, for example, we demonstrated on multiple occasions some great achievements. Pikes Peak, The Goodwood Hillclimb, to name just two. "In order to become a fully electric brand by the end of the decade, we are already taking the necessary steps today for the forthcoming transformation. The globally successful products from Volkswagen R are part of this exciting change process and will stand in future for sustainable electric mobility,” says Reinhold Ivenz, Head of Volkswagen R. Volkswagen R means ‘Top of Volume’ and helps the Volkswagen brand stand out from the rest of the high-volume segment. The R models make an important contribution to the emotive experience of Volkswagen brand products. In future, R customers can expect not just a premium performance product but also an outstanding customer experience. This will include exclusive R features, such as an accelerated order process – similar to the fast lane at the airport – and also exclusive charging options.
The most desirable brand for sustainable mobility
The most desirable brand for sustainable mobility – this is Volkswagen’s brand vision under its Group ACCELERATE 2030 strategy. And the customer experience plays a big part in this, too. The goal is that the real and digital worlds should increasingly merge to create an equivalent R customer experience. This includes integrating R models into racing games, incorporating virtual reality gaming in the vehicle and creating an R customer club with co-creation opportunities in the R community.
Transferring technology from the race track to series production
Volkswagen R’s current model portfolio is made up of seven models and the special edition Golf R “20 Years”. The “R” in its name has embodied a passion for motorsport throughout the brand’s history. R for racing and R for racing success. With the Polo R WRC, Volkswagen won the World Rally Championships four times, before going on to win two titles in the World Rallycross Championships. In 2018, the all-electric ID.R sports car set the overall record in the famous Pikes Peak mountain race, which remains unbeaten to this day.
A lot of the innovative technology that facilitated these victories, triumphs and records has been transferred to the road by Volkswagen R and into series production, for people seeking the extraordinary, every day and every time they get into their car, be it a Golf, T-Roc, Tiguan, Arteon or Touareg. It is the same philosophy we will apply to all future R-models.