The changes have been worked out in discussions with the VW business development group, its equivalent to a dealer council. A smaller range means dealers will need to stock fewer cars, according to VW, although it was not able to provide details.
At present, VW has almost 10,000 build combinations available to order when a variety of trims, colours and upholsteries are taken into account.
“This total is being reduced considerably but customers are unlikely to notice because the deleted derivatives are rarely requested,” says a Volkswagen spokeswoman.
“You could say the reduction is overdue, and when we came to look into it, we found that some options have never been ordered. We do not expect this move to affect sales.”
The cuts do not apply to a number of new or recently updated models – the Fox, Eos, Jetta and Touareg. Volkswagen and a number of other manufacturers are looking at ways of taking cost out of distribution and storage which have both become increasingly expensive.
The move has thrown up some surprises on colours, such as Candy White continuing only on GTi versions of the Golf and Polo because there is a demand on these derivatives. Sage Green metallic is axed across Polo, Golf and Golf Plus ranges.
Six petrol derivatives on Golf will no longer be available, including Sport 1.6 115bhp and GT 2.0 150bhp 4Motion. The choice of petrol versions on Golf Plus is cut by six, and five diesel Polo derivatives are dropped.