The New Beetle Harvard Case Study Solution Essay

1170 Words Sep 7th, 2013 5 Pages
“The New Beetle” (HBS) Case Study Analysis
This case study discusses the history of Volkswagen (VW) in America and in particular the launch and relaunch of one of the most successful VW models, the Beetle. 1. Why would positioning the New Beetle be considered Mission Impossible? Volkswagen (VW) started their business in the US in 1949 with the very successful Type 1 or as it was know, Beetle. In the 80’s, due to several reasons from legislation to Japanese competition, VW had to stop its production. In 1994, began the idea of re-launching the once brand’s icon. But this time, the New Beetle was envisioned at first as “the bug of the new millennium”, aligning the tradition and nostalgia of the past with the new technological advances and
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Demographic characteristics Psychographic characteristics 3 Most of them had their Old Beetle like “part of the family”, connecting him to special moments of their lives (marriage, youth, etc.) 4 This was a clear statement of what VW wanted to be and didn’t wanted to be, clearly differentiating the from more exclusionary brands like BMW or Mercedez-Benz or the Japanese who provided a cheap and fast but emotionless means of transport.


Concluding, it was a Mission Impossible because there were several different dimensions needed to combine while the car was an opportunity to bring back a brand’s icon, boosting sales in US market. Nevertheless, those decisions needed to be adjusted, since it was “a very different setting, with a very different audience and in a very different time”. 2. What are the pros and cons of each positioning options? As seen, VW marketing team had two segments to target and limited resources to do so. They were the Generation X (men and women between 18 and 34 years old, well educated and dynamic) and the Baby Boomers (men and women born between 1946 and 1964, well educated and with an income above average). Each one of these segments had its advantages and disadvantages, namely: Generation X Advantages - Trend towards uniqueness, self-expression, originality and

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