VW Polo hits the 1.5 million mark in Kariega

During the night shift on Monday, 19 February, the production team of Volkswagen Group Africa celebrated a milestone when the 1.5-millionth vehicle built for export in Kariega in the Eastern Cape rolled off the line.

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The milestone vehicle, a Polo GTI destined for the United Kingdom, also marked the 21 165th vehicle built for export this year alone. The Kariega plant built 101 557 Polos for export last year. The plant’s record for export units in one year was in 2019, when the team built 108 422 vehicles for export markets.

Volkswagen Group Africa has been building vehicles for export since 1992, including models such as the Volkswagen Jetta and Golf. Currently, the Kariega plant is the sole manufacturer of the Volkswagen Polo GTI and exports the Polo to 38 markets worldwide. The plant has been building the current Polo since January 2018 and began production of the facelifted Polo in August 2021; it also produces the popular Polo Vivo for the South African market.

Luleka Bastile (Quality), Carsten Berger (Head of Quality), Juergen Manthey (Quality), Ulrich Schwabe (Production Director), Pumza Mboniswa (Production) and Ntombizandile Gamanda (Production) with the milestone vehicle.

“Celebrating another production milestone this early in the year sets the tone for a successful 2024,” said Ulrich Schwabe, Volkswagen Group Africa Production Director. “Volkswagen Group Africa remains a strong player in the export space, and I am proud of the team achieving milestones such as these.

“As the home of Polo, we intend to continue building and delivering our high-quality vehicles to customers around the world – and hopefully achieve many more milestones along the way,” he said.

  • The manufacturer’s trading name remains as Volkswagen of South Africa (Pty) Ltd with only the holding name that changed to Volkswagen Group Africa to represent its regional steering responsibilities of the markets on the African continent.

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