The 2002 Geneva Motor Show among the many marvels revealed a Phaeton to the world. Volkswagen aims to launch an all-electric version of the car this year. This car is the baby of Ferdinand Piech, who is also the chairman of the Volkswagen Group. Piech wanted to compete against premium brands such as BMW, Mercedes, Audi, etc. through the Phaeton concept.
Piech was adamant that the car have the following features on it -
- A speed limit of 300 km/hour. He wanted this to be executed in spite of the fact that the Phaeton's electronic specifications wouldn't allow it to go beyond 250 km/hr.
- A 24-hour top speed driving capacity.
- That the car should be able to tolerate an exterior temperatures of up to 50 degree Celsius at top speed and full capacity.
- That the interior temperature capacity be 22 degree Celsius.
- It ought to possess a torque of 37000nm/degree.
Apart from these, the following characteristics of the Volkswagen Phaeton clearly come across as an advantage -
- A 335hp engine
- An axle ratio which is very short
- A wheelbase that is about 3000 m long
- A four-zone climate system
- A quadra-motion 4-wheel drive
- Air Suspension that adapts accordingly
- Damping control that works continuously
A New Concept Altogether!
It is also the very first of its kind and has resulted in the signing of quite a few individual patents. While the build and the capacity of the car is great, its sales haven't been as good. Though, it is selling very well in a few Asian countries, its sales in North America have been relatively far too low. The production of Phaeton was completely halted in 2006. After which, the model went through a few modifications and facelifts, but things haven't yet worked out for this one.
One of the reasons could be that the engines that were being sold in the American market had a few limitations. At the same time, the car came with an extremely advanced technology which made the drive the smoothest and the most convenient for the consumer.
The Technologies that it has to Offer!
The following technologies are available in a Phaeton -
- A 5.7 Electronic Stability
- ABS i.e Anti-lock brake
- Electronic Brakeforce Distribution
- A four-zone climate system
- ASR and Traction Control
- EDL (Electronic Differential Lock)
If one is looking to buy a second hand luxury car, then this is known to be the best bet. It is not only a car of the best quality but also runs on one-of-a-kind engine.
However, one of the major drawbacks of the Phaeton is its unconvincing body. With a body like that one and the kind of weight implications it comes with, it is hard to break into the premium brand market of luxury cars.
While it has an adaptable air suspension, it works best at mid-position. It's got a good grip thanks to its weight. However, the added weight can often act as a negative point. Yet, it can be countered with too many positives, the best one being the 230bhp engine.
Since it is competing with premium luxury cars, it has to offer comfort. Well, it does! The following features come-off starkly when it comes to interior seating comfort -
- Eminent Seating
- Climate Control
- Noise Isolation
Spin your Ride!
The Phaeton also provides for an extremely smooth ride. Thanks to its distinct design, there is more than enough room inside the car, thus making it a great ride for both, the passengers and the drivers. Apart from that, it has a boot that is as huge as 500 litres. So, it gives enough space for luggage as well as passengers. With 120mm of adjustable extra space, it is a solid deal!
However, one thing is very clear. This is a car solely for someone who is extremely rich. It isn't going to make things better for you financially. Here's how you are going to lose cash like crazy on this one -
- Very low resale value
- Very High Cost Price
- Very High Taxes
- Very bad Economy of Fuel
- High Cost of Service and Maintenance
Thus, unless you have money raining on you, this car is not for you. Otherwise, the competitors might honestly stand a better chance than the Phaeton.
Every Coin has Two Sides! Sometimes, You Win Both Ways!
Sadly though, the car hasn't been in production since 2014 and an all-new electronic version is to be launched this year. Also, the car has had mixed reviews since its inception.
Yet, it caters perfectly to the luxury market and is an excellent marvel. It is also pleasing to drive around in a Phaeton. Yet, some people are of the point of view that a backseat drive is much more comfortable and fun than having to chauffeur the car yourself.
Similarly, while the space is amazing at the back, the front seems to be a little cramped. Also, a lot of users aren't fans of the wooden and veneer finishing. However, some like the antique finishing of the car. One might conclude that it is a classic combination of antiquity and modernity with a wooden and veneer finishing on the body and digital gadgets for the sake of convenience.
While a lot of negativity surrounds the weight of the car, it's not really a compromise on the amount of comfort level the car offers. It offers ease of operations to the driver too.
Also, if you do want to go for a full throttle on this one, you are indeed in for an enjoyable ride.