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Home Around-the-World Volkswagen Autopavilion Marks 20 Years of Celebrating Heritage

Volkswagen Autopavilion Marks 20 Years of Celebrating Heritage

In March 2004, the Volkswagen Group Africa plant in Kariega opened the doors to its own heritage centre for the first time. The VW AutoPavilion, which was built following a R13-million investment, was established with the ultimate aim of giving a home to Volkswagen’s history and iconic vehicles, which could be enjoyed by employees and automotive fans alike.

In the 20 years that have followed, the AutoPavilion has established itself as a landmark for Volkswagen history, doubling its vehicles on display and boasting various exhibitions. Over R5-million has been invested in expanding the AutoPavilion’s offerings.

Among the 51 vehicles in the museum are the icons in the 70 Years of Volkswagen exhibition, as well as a variety of Volkswagen Beetles, concept cars and even vehicles from the different brands produced in Kariega since the plant opened in 1946 (then called SAMAD).

Aside from the exhibitions, the more than 670 000 visitors welcomed in the past 20 years have also had an exclusive look at the plant’s production operations. Though the plant previously offered FactoryTours, this has been part of the AutoPavilion experience since its opening, with more than 350 000 tours being conducted in the past two decades. The tours, which are offered on weekdays and are free of charge to the public, are especially popular among school groups.

“The AutoPavilion is how we share Volkswagen Group Africa’s history with our customers,” said Andile Dlamini, Head: Group Communication. “We are proud that this centre has been preserving our heritage and representing our company’s story for the past two decades. We hope to keep sharing our automotive story for many years to come.”

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