The New Beetle Harvard Case Study Solution

Topics: Volkswagen, Volkswagen Beetle, Marketing Pages: 4 (1182 words) Published: September 19, 2013
“The New Beetle” (HBS) Case Study Analysis
This case study discusses the history of Volkswagen (VW) in America and in particular the launch and relaunch of one of the most successful VW models, the Beetle. 1. Why would positioning the New Beetle be considered Mission Impossible? Volkswagen (VW) started their business in the US in 1949 with the very successful Type 1 or as it was know, Beetle. In the 80’s, due to several reasons from legislation to Japanese competition, VW had to stop its production. In 1994, began the idea of re-launching the once brand’s icon. But this time, the New Beetle was envisioned at first as “the bug of the new millennium”, aligning the tradition and nostalgia of the past with the new technological advances and design trends of the present and also matching the consumer’s needs. All this under 4 main values: Honesty, Simplicity, Reliability and Originality. Also, it would have the goal of constituting >25% of VW’s 1998’s selling goal. This showed to be a big challenge for the marketing team. Marketing Research analysis had identified VW’s a new kind of consumer set. Young, affluent and educated 1 individuals but also adventurous and thrill seekers who liked to have a more active role in driving, among 2 others . Supported by this information, VW created the “Drivers Wanted”, a value proposition of German quality allied to the dynamic and fun driving at affordable prices with the objective of targeting this young consumer and ultimately rebuild the brand equity and a sales boost, a “new generation of VW drivers”. Contrarily, the New Beetle revealed some ambiguity. On one hand there was the segment of Baby Boomers, 3 attracted by the heritage, tradition and emotional connection they had to the Beetle , being the natural segment to target but inconsistent with the adopted corporate strategy. On the other hand there was the potential customer revealed by marketing research and in line with corporate strategy, the so called Generation X,...
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