VW Polo and Beats: How Volkswagen is polishing up its image


How VW is polishing up its image with Beats

VW Polo and Beats: How Volkswagen is polishing up its image-polo

Beats has already worked with Fendi and Hello Kitty. Now VW wants to benefit from the image of the headphone manufacturer

Source: Jakob Hoff

VW has teamed up with the American headphone manufacturer Beats for a special Polo model. As a result, the small car also attracts people who don’t really care about cars.

Oh, how cool, rolling headphones! ”Jonas, my 16-year-old neighbor, points to the VW Polo, I am about to get into. He puts a thumb up, jumps on his skateboard, and rolls away. What, please, does this small car have to do with headphones?

Actually, I found it – apart from the rally stripes glued on, which stretches over the hood and roof – pretty inconspicuous. Calm, but good. Typically VW. I would not have expected praise from someone who tells me at every opportunity that cars are completely superfluous and who never wants to get his driver’s license.

Only on the second lap around the car do I discover what Jonas immediately noticed: a small round b in the frame of the passenger door. Riddle solved: The Polo is a special model; the b stands for the American headphone brand Beats, which in 2008 by the rapper Dr. Dre and the music producer Jimmy Iovine and which has belonged to Apple since 2014.

VW Polo and Beats: How Volkswagen is polishing up its image-Beats There better systems they

If you look closely, you will find the small b from Beats everywhere on and in the small car

Source: Jakob Hoff

On the driver’s side I find a b. And suddenly I see more and more of it: on the backrests of the sports seats, on the speakers and on the door sills.

VW has teamed up with a brand that has been extremely popular for several years. The b has become a status symbol for celebrities and hipsters. Football superstars like Neymar wear Beats headphones when they get off the team bus. The large headphones are also popular as an accessory that can be worn around the neck like a scarf when visiting a club.

But Beats sells more than a sound experience, Beats sells a certain lifestyle with its characteristic optics. And the Americans know their way around cooperations: They have already worked with both the fashion company Fendi and the toy empire Hello Kitty. VW wants to benefit from this and get away from its own, somewhat dusty image with the help of Beats.

There are better systems, but they are also more expensive

I had a special sound when I drove the small car for the first time (from 17,025 euros), however, did not attract attention, neither from the 95 hp three-cylinder engine nor from the sound system. I drove off without thinking too much. Every move was done.

As if the Polo had been my car for years. I had completely overlooked the fact that the word “Beats” greeted me on the start screen of the infotainment system when the engine was switched on.

According to the operating instructions, the Beats system has 300 watts, two tweeters in the A-pillars, two woofers in the front doors, two broadband speakers, a subwoofer in the spare wheel well, and it should offer “an outstanding sound experience”.

VW Polo and Beats: How Volkswagen is polishing up its image-volkswagen

The Polo‘s cockpit has a very logical structure and is very well made

Source: Jakob Hoff

I connect my smartphone to the infotainment system, start my streaming service, engage the drive mode of the 7-speed dual clutch transmission and drive off – and pull over at the next opportunity.

I don’t like the sound: after playing around with the highs and lows on the infotainment display, the tones sound much richer. With systems such as the Burmester high-end 3D that Porsche installs in the Panamera or the Bowers & Wilkins system that is installed in the Volvo S90 and V90 imitates the acoustics of the Gothenburg concert hall, beats cannot keep up. After a bit of fine-tuning, the system sounds at least significantly better than the 80-watt standard radios that small cars usually have to offer.

The Polo has been driving very successfully in the slipstream of the mighty Golf since 1975. Since then, the car has sold more than 14 million times. The sixth generation, which is offered exclusively as a four-door model, is based on the modular transverse matrix; the aim is to standardize the vehicle production of more than 40 models at VW, Audi, Skoda and Seat.

VW is a master of special models

This gives the 4.05 meter car access to a bulging shelf of Volkswagen Group technologies. For a surcharge, it can be equipped with extras that until recently were reserved exclusively for luxury vehicles: In dangerous situations, the Polo brakes automatically, it detects pedestrians walking into the street, automatically maintains the distance to the vehicle in front, automatically parks and drives out and issues a warning Cars in the blind spot.

While “Where Is My Mind” from the Pixies can be heard from the six Beats speakers, I remember my first car in the mid-nineties, also a special model: a used Opel Corsa Steffi Special. The fact that Steffi Graf, one of the great sporting role models of my childhood, was the godfather of the Corsa, made the little black car with an electric folding sunroof and cassette radio my dream car.

VW Polo and Beats: How Volkswagen is polishing up its image-polo

The Beats system can also be set via the display of the infotainment system

Source: Jakob Hoff

However, special models try not only to score points with buyers with a popular name, but also with a lot of equipment. VW is one of the pioneers in this marketing strategy. In the early 1990s, they brought the Golf II onto the market as a special “Fire and Ice” model, just in time for the theatrical release of Willy Bogner’s film of the same name.

The car in the special color Dark Violet, pearl effect, was crammed with extras: 15-inch wheels, double headlight grill, tachometer, sports steering wheel, power steering. Then they switched to stadium rock: Pink Floyd, Genesis and later Bon Jovi were the godfathers for golf and polo. 25 years later, the VW Polo has arrived in remix culture. Whether that goes down well with the target group is another matter.

When I told Jonas about the extras of the Polo at our next meeting on the doorstep – in addition to the sound system, there are 16-inch alloy wheels, sports seats and a multifunction steering wheel – he only asked me one question: "And are Beats headphones in the?" Price included? ”When I say no, his interest in the car suddenly ceased.

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2 thoughts on “VW Polo and Beats: How Volkswagen is polishing up its image”

  1. The sobering sound experience with the Beats system is hardly surprising: Beats is known for selling particularly expensive headphones with only mediocre sound. Every Beats headphone owner comes out, so to speak, little of good sound but to understand all the more about being hipster 😉
    In Golf, Passat and Co, which are driven less by hipsters and more by audiophile enthusiasts, VW consequently sells sound systems that were developed in cooperation with the small but fine high-end premium manufacturer Dynaudio from Denmark. The sound is then already right without having to bend the sound on the tone controls.

  2. With Apple and VW, two people who belong together have teamed up. Both grossly overpriced and pampered in the press until it is no longer possible. the "report" here, which is actually nothing but advertising prose, shows it very well. What does the advertised box actually cost? And with all the celebrated extras, not just the basic price. Did I read it over?


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