April 19, 2006

Today In Automotive History

1955 Volkswagen opens shop in New Jersey

Volkswagen of America, Inc. was established in Engelwood, New Jersey, as a sales division for the German car company. 1955 was a banner year for Volkswagen as the company produced its 1,000,000th car and exceeded, for the first time, the production benchmark of 1,000 cars per day on average. 1955 also saw the introduction of the Karmann Ghia Coupe, a joint venture between Volkswagen and Karmann. The sporty Karmann Ghia enjoyed great success in the United States. It wasn't until almost a decade after the formation of Volkswagen of America, that Volkswagen provided serious competition for Detroit's Big Three. The establishment of an American sales group paved the way for the success of the VW bug in America. By the mid-1960s, the VW Bug had almost single-handedly ended the years of "virtual monopoly" that Detroit manufacturers had previously enjoyed.

Posted by Quality Weenie at April 19, 2006 07:12 AM | TrackBack