Volkswagen Overseas

By: Natalie Anderson

Volkswagen is making waves overseas. In Dubai, a circulating scam email stating that the recipient has won a huge cash prize plus a new car courtesy of Volkswagen has caused major confusion among people in the UAE. Volkswagen has already released an official statement saying that they have not sent any email containing such message. The German automaker has warned people in the UAE to be careful and not to easily believe such hoax email.

The scam email is believed to originate from Nigeria were scam artist abound. The scam email was believed by many people since it states there that it came from "The Lottery Department, Volkswagen Automobiles". Furthermore, according to the circulating fake emails, the recipient has been selected from more than two hundred fifty thousand email addresses. The winner is said to receive two million pounds or Dh14.4 million plus a Volkswagen car.

The scam email also provides what appears to be a UK telephone number which supposedly winners may contact to get their secret pin code from a Claim officer.

Volkswagen UK has already made a statement saying that the emails circulating in the UAE have no connection with their company and should be ignored at all cost. "Extensive enquiries have revealed this is an online scam originating from Nigeria," Volkswagen said.

The German automaker also stressed that the stated UK number found in the scam email is in fact routes to a Nigerian premium rate number. This means that people who are to call this number will end up with a heavily charged telephone bill. It is believed that it is through the bill from which the scam artist will received his part of the deal.

In other Volkswagen overseas news, in Kula Lumpur, Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi said that troubled carmaker Proton and largest German automaker Volkswagen AG are in negotiations but he refused to give details of the deal.

According to Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi in an interview with New Straits Times, 'I don't want to comment because it is being negotiated.'

Further reports last week say that Volkswagen has agreed to buy a controlling stake in Proton's manufacturing division. This news has had favorably affected Proton's shares which rose to 13.14pct Friday to 7.75 rgt.

The Malaysian government is under intense pressure to announce details of the said partnership between the losing Proton and Germany's giant Volkswagen. It should be noted that Proton last year lost its status as Malaysia's biggest selling carmaker to its rival Perodoa.

Aside from Volkswagen, Proton has also tried to negotiate with the US auto giant General Motors as well as with PSA Peugeot Citroen of France. There are also three Malaysian automotive firms that have expressed their interest in taking stakes in the company.

It is interesting to note that the Malaysian government owns 59 pct of Proton in addition to a 43 pct stake held by its investment arm Khazanah Nasional.

Volkswagen and Proton will release their official announcement on February 8, 2007.

About Proton
Proton Holdings Berhad is short for Perusahaan Otomobil Nasional (Malay for National Automobile Enterprise). It is Malaysia's first car manufacturer founded by former Malaysia Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad in the year 1983. Proton is listed on the Bursa Malaysia.

About Volkswagen
Volkswagen means "peoples' car" in German. It is also considered an icon in the 20th century due to the large number of legendary cars it has produced. As a fact, the German automaker's record is unparalleled in the industry. It was Ferdinand Porsche who has conceived the idea of creating a "people's car". He wants to provide the German public at large with an affordable and quality transport.

However some historians say that it was Adolf Hitler that commissioned Ferdinand Porsche to build a small, inexpensive car. In the year 1934, Porsche has made his first ever masterpiece- a Beetle shaped-sedan that was called Volkswagen (German for people's car). The Beetle made its debut two years later. The war delayed the production of the vehicle until 1949. A year later the beetle shaped sedan became popular and was then known as the Volkswagen Beetle.

Even way back then Volkswagen was already renowned for its quality vehicles and auto parts like Volkswagen brake dust shield. As a fact, its very own Beetle which has become its trademark later earns the title best-selling car of all time. Its Karmann convertible which was produced in the year 1949 has also become the best-selling convertible in the world.

By the year 1955, Volkswagen has grown into a world corporation. It started building factories and working communities in countries like the United States, Brazil and Canada as well as in some major centres in Western Europe.

In the last fifteen years of the millennium Volkswagen have emerged as a true global force in the automobile industry especially with its acquisition and redevelopment of now famous brands Audi, SEAT, Skoda, and Lamborghini.

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