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VW PAIRS CARS WITH SKIS;TIE-IN WITH K2 SNOW PRODUCTS FOLLOWS BIKES

By Published on .

Volkswagen of America, riding on brisk sales of its earlier Jetta Trek mountain-bike package, launches a Golf K2 ski package today in a national TV campaign.

The bike and ski deals are the first of four national tie-ins for VW, as it tries to link with the activities and affinities of its customers.

The Golf K2 promotion offers the four-door Golf, roof rack and choice of a pair of K2 skis or a K2 snowboard.

TOPPING THE FUN CHART

VW research revealed skiing and snowboarding topped the fun chart for VW owners, said Steve Keyes, project launch manager for both the Jetta and Golf packages. Biking ranked second.

Music was third, and Mr. Keyes said that suggests some sort of musical event promotion. He declined further comment on it.

Mr. Keyes wouldn't discuss the campaign's cost. VW spent $70 million in measured media in 1995, according to Competitive Media Reporting.

VW's agency, Arnold Communications, Boston, developed a single humorous spot that will run on cable networks, including MTV: Music Television, ESPN and VH1: Video Hits One, with broadcast spot buys on such NBC shows as "Seinfeld," "Friends" and "ER."

Print ads appear in November books, including several ski and men's magazines, Rolling Stone and car-enthusiast magazines.

VW also is sponsoring the K2 New School ski and snowboard teams, which travel to ski areas demonstrating products.

"The reason we got involved with K2 is their demographics were almost a mirror of VW's, although [the match is] more of a mindset and psychographics," Mr. Keyes said.

VW plans to sell only about 6,000 of the Golf K2s.

JETTA TREK A SUCCESS

All but 1,000 of the 16,000 Jetta Treks made for the U.S. and Canada have been sold. VW last week reported its best October sales figures in six years.

Mike Sullivan, a VW dealer in Santa Monica, Calif., said he's sold 100 new cars per month for the past three months-his best performance in five years. "I'm real pleased with Arnold," he said. "They're as good as I hoped they would be when we picked them [in 1995]; even better."

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