Okay, I’ll admit I chuckle at the new VW Routan TV spots. Brooke Shields is particularly entertaining and the supporting actors are appropriately confused and bemused. But it does bother me that the whole thrust of the marketing campaign is that people will go to extremes for “German engineering”. I am a fan of German-engineered cars but that would exclude the Routan. You see, the Routan is actually a Chrysler minivan with minor modifications, such as interior finish. Yes, Chrysler was owned by Daimler at the time the Chrysler minivan was designed, but I hardly think that German overlords to Dodge engineers in Detroit counts as “German Engineering”. Nor do I think that VW is trying to say “buy our car since it was designed by an American company while they were toiling for one of our chief competitors”.