VW Group raises number of EV models planned in next 10 years

By Dave Leggett | 14 March 2019

The MEB platform will be at the heart of VW Groups e-mobility new product strategy over the next decade

The MEB platform will be at the heart of VW Group's e-mobility new product strategy over the next decade

Volkswagen Group is planning to launch almost 70 new electric models in the next ten years – up from the 50 previously planned. As a result, the projected number of vehicles to be built on the Group's electric platforms in the next decade will increase from 15m to 22m.

It says expanding e-mobility is an important building block on the road to a CO2-neutral balance. Volkswagen maintains it has signed off a comprehensive decarbonisation program aimed at achieving a fully CO2-neutral balance in all areas from fleet to production to administration by 2050 and says it is fully committed to the Paris climate targets.

Dr Herbert Diess, CEO of Volkswagen AG, said: "Volkswagen is taking on responsibility with regard to the key trends of the future – particularly in connection with climate protection. The targets of the Paris Agreement are our yardstick. We will be systematically aligning production and other stages in the value chain to CO2 neutrality in the coming years. That is how we will be making our contribution towards limiting global warming. Volkswagen is seeking to provide individual mobility forms of people for years to come – individual mobility that is safer, cleaner and fully connected. In order to shoulder the investments needed for the electric offensive we must make further improvements in efficiency and performance in all areas."

The Volkswagen Group has 'set milestones in all areas to be achieved in the coming years on the road to complete decarbonisation by 2050'.

The measures follow three principles:

VW says that in order to improve the CO2 balance of vehicles throughout their lifecycle, for example, Volkswagen has already made a start on the supply chain. A 'detailed roadmap is currently being drawn up' and VW says there is particularly significant potential for steel and aluminium supplies.

The 2025 target is to reduce the CO2 footprint of the vehicle fleet by 30% across the lifecycle compared to 2015. Volkswagen is therefore electrifying the vehicle portfolio, with investment in this area alone amounting to more than EUR30bn by 2023. The share of electric vehicles in the group fleet is to rise to at least 40% by 2030.

The first of the new-generation electric vehicles go into production this year: the Audi e-tron will be followed by the Porsche Taycan. Reservations for each of these models already total 20,000 units. And electric vehicles will be brought into the mainstream with the ramp up of the Volkswagen ID. Other models in this first wave will be the ID Crozz, the SEAT el-born, the Skoda Vision E, the ID Buzz , and the ID Vizzion.

In order to support the electric offensive, LG Chem, SKI, CATL and Samsung were selected as strategic battery cell suppliers. In view of the constantly increasing demand, Volkswagen is also taking a close look at possible participation in battery cell manufacturing facilities in Europe. Looking further ahead, solid-state batteries also have great potential, the company notes. The goal is to enable an industrial level of production with this technology together with partner QuantumScape.

At the same time, CO2 emissions at all manufacturing plants are to be cut 50% by 2025 compared with 2010. The conversion of the power station in Wolfsburg from coal to gas will reduce CO2 emissions by 1.5m tonnes annually from 2023 onwards. Audi's production activities at the Brussels site, for example, are already completely CO2-neutral. The Zwickau plant will not only be the lead factory for the Modular Electric Drive Toolkit (MEB); the ID built there will be delivered to customers with a CO2-neutral balance.

The MEB lies at the heart of Volkswagen's electric offensive. The cost of e-mobility can be significantly lowered through partnerships to enable the widest possible spread of the MEB and the associated economies of scale. That makes individual mobility affordable and usable for the mainstream in the future as well. One example of such a partnership is the planned cooperation with Aachen-based e.GO Mobile AG recently announced at the Geneva International Motor Show.

To boost e-mobility further, VW will be installing 400 fast-charging stations along Europe's major roads and highways by 2020 in collaboration with industry partners in IONITY. some 100 of these will be located in Germany. That means there will be a station every 120 kilometres. Elli (Electric Life), Volkswagen's new subsidiary, will also offer wallboxes for charging at home, using green power – initially in Germany. In addition, there will be 3,500 charging points on employee car parks at all plants with further charging opportunities at dealerships.