Volkswagen made public its plans for a second new SUV model at the Shanghai motor show this weekend, with the unveiling of a so-called coupé variant of the CrossBlue – a Toyota Highlander-rivaling SUV the German car maker plans to take into production at its plant in Chattanooga, Tennessee in 2015.
The overtly sporting four-wheel drive SUV, pictured here in a series of official photographs for the first time, is said to closely preview a new five-seat model that is being developed as a sister car to the original seven seat CrossBlue unveiled at the Detroit motor show back in January.
“We’re looking to cover a broader section of the market with our next generation of SUV models,” a Volkswagen official revealed to Autocar on the eve of the Shanghai motor show, adding, “There is definite customer demand for a more sporting model alongside the standard car we hinted to with the earlier BlueCross concept, and we’re airing our ideas on how it might look in China”.
Both the Volkswagen CrossBlue and CrossBlue coupé have been conceived to enter the marque's line-up as a successor to the smaller Tiguan in markets such as North America and China, at a price that would see them positioned below the more luxurious Touareg – itself set to grow appreciably when a third-generation model is revealed in 2016.
While retaining the same styling lineage as the initial CrossBlue concept, the new coupé variant boasts a significantly sleeker silhouette than its comparatively upright sibling, with a lower front-end, more heavily angled windscreen, shallower glasshouse and added curvature to its roofline. The new SUV clearly places styling ahead of practicality – something that is as evidenced by the heavy rake of its tailgate.
As well as boasting a more eye-catching profile, the new Volkswagen concept also receives its own unique exterior detailing. Key elements include a new interpretation of Volkswagen’s horizontally themed corporate grille that mates with the internal graphics of the LED headlamps to provide the BlueCross coupé with an imposing front end appearance enhanced by its visual width.