Today, the clock counts down to the most exciting moment to start an once-in-a-lifetime experience that millions of people all over the world never forget.
As the official automobile partner of the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games, Volkswagen has been trying its utmost to realize the commitment of becoming the most reliable partner, in addition to spreading the Olympic spirit and extending the reach of the Games in the past four years since 2004.
Volkswagen is deeply engaged in supporting the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games through offering a large fleet of vehicles and comprehensive services.
Professor Dr. Martin Winterkorn, chairman of the Board of Management of Volkswagen AG, said: "Volkswagen has been in the Chinese market for nearly 25 years and has been growing into one of the leaders in the auto industry. I am confident that Volkswagen, with its advanced technology and continuous innovation, will develop into a distinctive and sustainable success story in the Chinese market."
Passing on the passion
As the official automobile supplier of the in-country leg of torch relay, which lasted 97 days and covered 113 cities, Volkswagen Group China, together with its Chinese joint ventures, Shanghai Volkswagen and FAW-Volkswagen, supplied a fleet of 959 new vehicles to accompany the Olympic flame on its way across China and finally arriving Beijing on August 6 successfully.
Dr. Winfried Vahland, president and CEO of Volkswagen Group China, said: "It is a great honor for Volkswagen to have been chosen as the official supplier of the torch relay. We provided our latest, best and the most environmental-friendly products and dispatch our best service team to accompany the torch relay and bring it to a successful conclusion."
A group of 28 Volkswagen Olympic team members and over 400 regional joint venture staff members accompanied the fleet of a dozen or more Volkswagen core convoy vehicles, as it made its way to Beijing. Models featured in the relay include the Volkswagen Multivan, Crafter, Tourag, Magotan, Sagitar, Passat Lingyu, Touran, Skoda Octavia and Audi A6.
The convoy crossed 31 provinces, autonomous regions and municipalities, moving at less than 8 km per hour. To ensure a successful torch relay, Shanghai Volkswagen and FAW-Volkswagen also dispatched more than 200 of the company's best technical support and after-sales service staffs to provide 24-hour support along the journey.
Millions of Chinese people lined the routes to see the torch and feel the passion as well as Volkswagen unmatched product exposure behind the torchbearers.
Serving the Games
Beyond the nearly 1,000 torch relay vehicles which Volkswagen Group China already provided, perhaps the most outstanding aspect of the Group's Olympic commitment is the over 5,000 vehicles used for transporting BOCOG staff, athletes and VIPs during the Games.
Dr. Winfried Vahland said, "Being part of both the Olympic and Chinese automobile history, Volkswagen Group China, together with Shanghai Volkswagen and FAW-Volkswagen, are firmly committed to establishing a new level of 'gold medal performance' for a smooth Olympics."
The fleet includes Audi and Volkswagen models like Magotan, Passat Lingyu, Touran, Sagitar and Skoda Octavia. More than 140 technicians from Volkswagen's Chinese joint ventures working at six stations will provide daily vehicle checks and professional maintenance.
Promoting green Games
As another demonstration of Volkswagen's commitment to social responsibility and its efforts to promote environmental protection and technological advancement, Volkswagen Group China provided a green fleet consisting of 30 vehicles to the Beijing Organizing Committee of the Olympic Games (BOCOG) and Beijing Olympics Main Press Center (MPC) by working closely with the joint venture partners. These vehicles represent Volkswagen's world-leading powertrain technologies, including the TSI petrol engines, TDI diesel engines, DSG dual-clutch transmission, EcoFuel and BlueMotion.
One key aim of providing such a green fleet is to realize and further advance the concepts of "Green Olympics" and "Hi-tech Olympics". The green technologies are set to be more widely used in Volkswagen Group's products in China, providing greater driving pleasure at lower fuel consumption and lower emission.
Hi-tech and brand values
Located in the Olympic Green, the Volkswagen Group Olympic Showcase occupies an area of 2,000 sq m. Its unique design combines on-site display with outdoor landscape: the seven glass water screens in the front use the flow of water to adjust the air temperature and a 70-m long screen built within the structure provides regular broadcast of Olympic events. The modern design and water elements embodied in the Olympic Showcase match perfectly with the original features of its nearby Bird's Nest and Water Cube.
Through multimedia, hi-tech and interactive features, the Volkswagen Group Olympic Showcase will put forward the three major themes - automobiles, China and the Olympic Games - as well as their evolution from the classic past to dynamic present, and finally to a future full of passion. Seven showcases present vehicles from Volkswagen, Audi and Skoda, and future development concepts of the Volkswagen Group - Driving Ideas.
Great commitments always need to be backed up by a tremendous strength. Being the partner with the Chinese auto industry for nearly 25 years, with the most reliable quality, people, technology and service, Volkswagen Group China together with its Chinese joint ventures are confident to complete the historical and glorious task with all-out passion and responsibilities to boost the success of the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games.