VW Design Vision GTI -05

Staying still is moving backwards, some say. Volkswagen seems to agree with this, as it moves to implement a shorter five-year life cycle policy for its future core models, as opposed to the existing and (European) industry-standard seven-year cycle.

As such, a new mainstream model such as future iterations of the Golf or Passat will be replaced by an all-new version after just five years of its initial introduction. A mid-life facelift, meanwhile, will be carried out three years into the model’s now-shortened life.

“We will reduce the life cycle of our products to better align with customers’ buying habits. A five-year life cycle will cut two years off our current life cycle,” Auto Express quoted Volkswagen of America’s vice president for marketing and strategy, Joerg Sommer as saying.

A five-year life cycle programme is closer to a Japanese carmaker’s standard operating pattern, though Mazda is reported to move to a four-year life cycle schedule. First unveiled in July 2012, the still-fresh Mazda6 already has a mid-life facelift coming up soon – so it does appear as if the plan is moving ahead.

Now, is the world ready for full-model updates every four of five years? Tell us in the comments below.