VW’s future EV development plans are starting to gain a lot of traction.
It’s no secret that Volkswagen is making a big push for EVs to repair the damage done to the brand’s reputation by the infamous Dieselgate scandal. These plans are starting to gain significant traction, as the German automaker has announced it will launch a new electric car “virtually every month” from 2019. By the end of 2022, Volkswagen will be producing battery-powered vehicles in as many as 16 locations across the world. Currently, VW produces electric vehicles in three locations, but this will increase to nine within the next two years.
To ensure adequate battery capacity for the massive expansion, VW has also forged partnerships with companies to provide battery cells and technology for its EVs in Europe and China in an investment worth around 20 billion euros ($25 billion), with US deals set to follow.
This huge expansion was announced by VW’s CEO Matthias Muller at the automaker’s Annual Media Conference in Berlin. "Over the last few months, we have pulled out all the stops to implement ‘Roadmap E' with the necessary speed and determination," he explained. Last year, VW announced its "Roadmap E" plan to ramp up its electrification plans.
By 2025, the VW Group intends to build up to three million electric vehicles annually across brands including Audi, Porsche, Skoda and Volkswagen. This year alone, VW plans to introduce another nine new vehicles, three of which will be pure EVs. This will add to the Group’s eight existing fully electric and plug-in hybrid models. "This is how we intend to offer the largest fleet of electric vehicles in the world, across all brands and regions, in just a few years," Muller added. By 2030, VW aims to have around 300 new electrified models, many of which will be based on existing models. This doesn’t mean that the German automaker is abandoning conventionally-powered cars, however.
“We are making massive investments in the mobility of tomorrow, but without neglecting current technologies and vehicles that will continue to play an important role for decades to come," Mueller said. "We are putting almost €20 billion ($A32 billion) into our conventional vehicle and drive portfolio in 2018, with a total of more than €90 billion scheduled over the next five years." Launching later this year, the Audi e-tron SUV will begin VW’s aggressive push for electrification, though it will be playing catch up to the Jaguar I-Pace. The first EV to ride on VW’s MEB platform will be the I.D. hatch in 2020, which will kickstart the brand’s new I.D. sub-brand.