1,000 EVs will replace around 1,500 combustion-powered cars on the island.
After the diesel emissions scandal threatened to tarnish its reputation forever, Volkswagen is on a mission to become one of the world's leading electric car makers with its ID. EV family. Over the next five years, the German automaker will invest €33 billion ($38.6 billion) into electrification technology and launch 75 new electric models by 2029.
As part of its strategy to become carbon neutral by 2050, Volkswagen is transforming the tropical Greek island of Astypalea into a "model island for climate-neutral mobility." Welcome to EV paradise.
As part of the six-year project, new vehicle and ride-sharing services will be introduced to help reduce traffic and energy will be generated by green power sources such as solar and wind.
The new transport system with digital mobility services will include an all-electric year-round ridesharing service that will replace the island's local bus service. VW is also working with local partners to transform part of the island's traditional vehicle rental business into a vehicle sharing service offering e-scooters from Seat along with e-bikes and electric cars. VW predicts this will help to significantly reduce traffic on the island.
Around 1,000 electric vehicles will replace roughly 1,500 combustion-powered cars as VW starts introducing new electric ID. models like the Volkswagen ID.3 compact and the Volkswagen ID.4 crossover to the market. Commercial vehicles, police cars, emergency vehicles, and public sector fleets will also be electrified. To cater for the increased number of EVs on the island, Volkswagen will install a comprehensive charging infrastructure with around 230 private and several public charging points.
"Politics, business and society have a common responsibility to limit climate change. Our long-term goal is climate-neutral mobility for everyone. And with the Astypalea project we will explore how to realize that vision already today. E-mobility and smart mobility will improve the quality of life, while contributing to a carbon-neutral future," said Dr. Herbert Diess, CEO of the Volkswagen Group.
Konstantinos Fragogiannis, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, added: "Today is a great day for Astypalea, the Dodecanese Region, the Aegean Sea and all of Greece. Today we are launching the first ´Smart Green Island' project in our country, which marks a major change in our outlook. Electric transport and a holistic, green and sustainable action plan will have a positive impact on the everyday life of the island's inhabitants. Combined with a pioneering public transport system, we are turning futuristic ideas into reality."