Monday 16 November 2009

Last VW Golf Mk1 to be built (SA)

Volkswagen has launched a new edition of the Golf Mk1 in South Africa, as production of the iconic hatchback finally comes to an end.

The VW Golf Mk1 is still being produced for sale in the country and has been since in production at the Uitenhage plant since 1984, when the Mk2 model went on sale in markets around the world. It is the only factory in the world still making the Mk1. The Citi was introduced in 1978.

Ever-evolving safety regulations have finally caught up with the Mk1with production ending once the 1,000 roll-out models, known as the Citi Mk1 are built. Around 377,484 Citi's have been produced in South Africa over the last 25 years.

The Citi Mk1 will be available in either Black or Shadow Blue metallic paint, with a range of upgrades also fitted over the standard Mk1. These include 15” gun-metal painted alloys, GT-style stripes under the doors, chrome exhaust pipe, twin headlights and a chrome front grille surround.

Inside, the Citi gets half-leather sports seats, retro golf-ball gearknob, leather steering wheel, manual windows, new floor mats, special red stitching throughout and an individually numbered plaque on the dashboard.

Each Citi Mk1 will be fitted with a 100bhp 1.6 litre petrol engine and will start from R113,500 (£9,200/€10,280). It will only be available in South Africa.

A replacement for the Citi is being rumoured to be the 2009 Volkswagen Gol – a cheap compact family car sold in Brazil.

Press Release:

Citi Mk1 Limited Edition - the final chapter in the life of the iconic Citi

Volkswagen of South Africa is paying homage to the original Golf 1, with the introduction of a final limited edition Citi, aptly branded, Citi Mk1. Only 1,000 of these collectors' cars will find their way into the hands of motoring enthusiasts in South Africa and around the world.

The introduction of Citi Mk1 to the Citi range is a fitting gesture to send off and close the final chapter of the best-ever selling hatchback in South African motoring history. Citi has provided South African motorists with a fun, unique, affordable driving package for 25 years. It has defied all marketing textbook theories on the lifecycle of a brand. Citi will remain a legend for decades to come.

Since 1978, when the Golf 1 was launched in South Africa, Volkswagen of South Africa has produced 377,484 Citi's and a total of 517,384 A1 Golfs (including the Citi's). The Volkswagen of South Africa plant in Uitenhage has been the only plant in the Volkswagen Group to have continued building the legendary A1 Golf in the guise of the Citi Brand.

Citi made its first appearance on South African roads in 1984, six years after Golf 1 was introduced in South Africa. Volkswagen of South Africa launched the Citi as its affordable car to compete in the entry level segment following the introduction of a bigger and more expensive Golf 2 - the "Jumbo" Golf as it became affectionately known.

For 25 years, the Citi range has continuously been refreshed and kept alive with innovative, appealing special and limited editions such as the Designa, CTI, Deco, Sonic, Wolf, Bafana Bafana, R Line, Xcite, Billabong and most recently the GTS.

The latest and last limited edition of the Citi range, the Citi Mk1, is offered with the 1.6i engine which has a power output of 74kW at 5400rpm.

The Citi Mk1 is fitted with 15-inch, gunmetal painted alloy wheels and will have a polished exhaust tailpipe, dark taillights, double headlights and chrome highlight around grille. On the sides, it will have GT-styled stripes in chrome foil.

The interior has sport seats with partial leather, leather steering wheel, the original golf ball gear knob, floor mats with Mk1 logo and red stitching detail throughout.

Citi Mk1 will only be available in two colours, Black and Shadow Blue metallic.

Only 1,000 units will be available and each will have a unique number - from 1 to 1,000 - which will be embossed on the passenger side dashboard and integrated into the uniquely designed exterior Mk1 logo.

Like other Citi models, Citi Mk1 comes with the standard 3 year/120 000km warranty.

Volkswagen AutoMotion maintenance and service plans are optional.

Citi Mk1 retail price is R113 500 (VAT included).

Citi bids farewell to South Africa:

Two of the last produced Citi Mk1 units will join other Volkswagen Classic cars that are on permanent display at the Autostadt, the Volkswagen Group Museum and Brand Expo in Wolfsburg, Germany and at the Volkswagen AutoPavillion Brand heritage centre in Uitenhage.

At the Volkswagen of South Africa production plant in Uitenhage, it was an emotional day for the employees when the last Citi, Citi Mk1 001, rolled off the production line to mark the official end of the A1 production. Thousands of employees attended a special event to bid farewell and pay tribute to the legend and the people who have been crafting the A1 (Citi and Golf 1) by hand for more than 30 years. Over 120 employees, who are still employed by Volkswagen of South Africa, have worked for more than 20 years on the A1 production line.

Meanwhile, a Goodbye Tour to the Citi will kick off on 12 November 2009 in Uitenhage and will end on 22 November 2009, back at the home of Citi in Uitenhage. The tour will take the limited edition Citi Mk1 across the country with major stopovers in Cape Town, Bloemfontein, Johannesburg, Pretoria and Durban. At each city or town where Citi Mk1 will stop, the local public will be invited to make their mark on the car that has made its mark on so many people in South Africa by signing the last Citi ever produced.

A special website for the Goodbye Citi Tour, will be created for the Citi fans and the public to follow the route and daily activities of this very special Citi Mk1 across South Africa. The video footage and photos captured each day will be posted onto the website.

Citi fans will also be invited to post their own farewell messages and tributes to the icon through social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter, Flickr and YouTube.

Citi Mk1, unit number 003 and the last Citi produced that will be available to the public, will be auctioned online through from the 3rd to 23rd of November 2009. The reserve price will be R1 and the minimum bid increments are set as R100. All the proceeds from the auction will be donated to a community-based organisation, Ubuntu Education Fund* in Port Elizabeth. The auction will be open to local and international bidders. However, the bids will only be accepted in South African Rand (ZAR) and the car will be delivered to one address in South Africa.

                          Volkswagen CitiGolf (1978 - Present):

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