Volkswagen has announced that its plans for the next Phaeton have been redefined in the wake of its highly-publicized diesel emissions scandal. The automaker will now pursue a pure-electric powertrain to make the Phaeton its next clean-energy halo car. Previous plans reportedly called for a plug-in hybrid or diesel V8.
The previous version of the Phaeton was last sold in the U.S. back in 2006. At the time, it was a full-size sedan that shared a platform with the Bentley Continental GT and a powertrain with the Audi A8. Prices ranged from $66,700 to $101,300, considerably more than any other VW-badged model. The car was discontinued after 2006 due to poor sales.
Reports say the next Phaeton will be built on the automaker's new MLB modular platform that the next generation Audi Q7 and Volkswagen Touareg will be based on. Styling may be influenced by the C Coupe GTE Concept that debuted at the 2015 Shanghai Auto Show. Not much is known about its feature set, but VW says it will have the latest connectivity and assistance systems.
Reports indicated the next Phaeton was ready for production but that the automaker had put it on hold to focus on lowering production costs. The vehicle was initially slated to debut around 2018, but industry sources currently expect an ETA as late as 2019 or 2020.
Be sure to check back for the latest release info as soon as it becomes available.
Pictured: Volkswagen C Coupe GTE Concept (Source: Volkswagen)