A huge new investment for all 50 states and over 600 dealers.
The Volkswagen ID.4 is only the start of something huge for the German automaker. The EV crossover's first cousin, the ID.3 hatchback, continues to sell extremely well in overseas markets. Before long, VW will have several EVs on sale globally, including the reborn microbus ID.Buzz.
But first, it's time to gear up in preparation for the upcoming ID.4 production shift from Germany to Chattanooga, Tennessee. The factory's expansion and renovation are nearly complete but there's another key component to making the ID.4 an American success story: dealership training. VW has just announced a $20 million investment for all of its 600+ dealerships in all 50 US states. The money is being put towards critical things like EV service centers, digital tools, a high-capacity charging infrastructure, and technician training.
The program has already begun and is expected to last through June 2022. So far, VW dealers have added 23,490 kWh of charging capacity, got over 1,260 technicians up to speed, and trained EV specialists dedicated to helping customers fully understand the vehicle they're buying.
"It's the consumer who will lead America's electric vehicle revolution," said Scott Keogh, President and CEO of Volkswagen Group of America. "And it's our dealership partners who bring their communities into electric vehicles, providing unmatched service and expertise. We're dedicated to fully support them in this journey. With nine out of ten Volkswagen ID.4 buyers identifying as first-time EV buyers, I've never been more confident that the electric future is driven by Volkswagen."
The EV Technician Retention Program is a vital component because it supports dealers to constantly keep training their technicians as America shifts towards EVs. Customers won't accept inferior technical service. To ensure that doesn't happen, VW's program will financially reward technicians with a retention bonus of $2,000 yearly as long as they continue to gain new certifications and consistently improve their EV skillsets.
Assuming everything remains on schedule and there are no hiccups, ID.4 production will kick off in Chattanooga next year.