Asked to name a Volkswagen model that sells in excess of 425,000 units a year, most people would choose the Golf. And they'd be right. But if they guessed "ketchup", they'd still be right.
Volkswagen is using the Techno Classica 2010 in Essen, Germany as the opportunity to commemorate the 40-year success story of Volkswagen Spiced Ketchup, which was born back in the 1970s.
In 1997, Volkswagen began officially bottling and selling the Spiced Ketchup. In that year, 20,000 bottles were sold. Since then the sauce has gone from strength to strength: in 2009, over 425,000 bottles were sold and, in the first 10 weeks of 2010, 100,000 bottles have already been sold.
This year they will also launch VW Classic Ketchup, of which just 1000 bottles will be available.
The new classic flavor is said to be the ideal complement to Volkswagen's world-famous curry sausage. The ketchup has a thicker consistency than standard ketchup and a unique flavour, the recipe for which is, like that of the curry sausage itself, as closely guarded a secret as any classified automotive R&D project.
Alongside the limited-edition ketchup, Volkswagen is presenting a raft of classic and historic vehicles at Techno Classic. These include the K70, which debuted over 40 years ago, and the Iltis all-wheel drive icon, which was first seen 30 years ago. There will also be the Golf Country Crossover from 20 years ago, and the Tarek off-roader which preceded the Touareg.
Iltis: all-wheel drive icon debuted 30 years ago, winning the 1980 Paris-Dakar race
Type 181: open 'bucket' design has inspired individualists for 40 years
Apal Buggy: beach cruiser for Europe, based on the Beetle
Golf Country: crossover trendsetter launched 20 years ago
Tarek: rear-wheel drive through the desert to Dakar
T3 and its successors: 25 years of Bulli with front-wheel drive
K70: the front-wheel drive era began 40 years ago
Later this month, on 25 April, the Volkswagen AutoMuseum will celebrate its 25th anniversary. To mark the occasion, the museum will host a special exhibition named "25 years of the Volkswagen AutoMuseum".
This exhibition covers the evolution of Volkswagen cars and features a number of classic and significant vehicles from 1985 and 2010. The exhibition will be open to the public from 23 April to 19 September 2010.
For more information visit http://automuseum.volkswagen.de/