In a bid to revive brand interest within the United States, Volkswagen is unveiling the Cross Coupe GTE at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit.
The vehicle could plug the notable hole in Volkswagen's lineup and could help the company improve its sales in the United States.
However, the Cross Coupe GTE will not be able to do that just yet, as the vehicle will just be a show car. Volkswagen had not yet revealed a time commitment on when the car will go on sale in the United States.
The German company has grown to become the second biggest vehicle manufacturer in the world, but has largely done so without gaining a significant market share in the United States. While the demand for new vehicles grew to its highest in the country since 2006, sales for Volkswagen brands have decreased by 10 percent to only 366,970 vehicles last year.
One possible reason for Volkswagen's declining sales is the lack of options within its SUV lineup. There are only two choices in the United States, namely the compact Tiguan that sells for $26,255 and the upscale Touareg that sells for $44,705. Neither of the vehicles greatly appeals to consumers in the United States.
The Cross Coupe GTE is a vehicle that would definitely appeal to American consumers, however, as a five-seater, mid-sized SUV with a V6 plug-in hybrid engine and 22-inch alloy wheels. The SUV has a more rugged style, as seen in its front grille, with a new look that is meant to mirror the "American way of life," said Volkswagen design chief Klaus Bischoff.
Volkswagen has previously said that it will make investments worth $7 billion in North America by 2018, as the company looks to double its annual sales in the United States of 800,000 units.
Both analysts and car manufacturers predict that sales in the United States for vehicles will once again increase this year, which will be the sixth straight year that the industry will strengthen if the forecasts turn true.
The rise of the automobile industry in the United States can be attributed to a developing labor force, the opening of available credit to consumers and the fall of prices of gasoline to their lowest levels in over half a decade.
Volkswagen will do well to capitalize on the ongoing revival of the automobile market in the country, but the company does not yet have any definite plans in when it will expand its SUV line.