Volkswagen starts ID.3 production in Zwickau

By Graeme Roberts | 4 November 2019

VW has converted Zwickau entirely to EVs

VW has converted Zwickau entirely to EVs

Volkswagen has kicked off what it termed its "system changeover to e-mobility" by marking the start of production of the ID.3 in Zwickau with a ceremony attended by German chancellor Angela Merkel and, of course, group CEO Herbert Diess.

The group plans to sell 22m EVs worldwide by 2028 and is converting its entire Zwickau plant to make EVs with a spend of EUR1.2bn to date.

The plant is scheduled to build 100,000 electric models next year with output rising to 330,000 in 2021.

"The ID.3 will make an important contribution to the breakthrough of e-mobility. It makes clean individual mobility accessible to millions of people and is a milestone for our company on the road to becoming climate-neutral by 2050", Diess said.

The ID.3 is based on VW's Modular Electric Drive Toolkit (MEB) and the automaker claims a long range, spacious interior and dynamic vehicle handling for the new model priced from "under EUR30,000" in Germany. The ID.3 will be launched throughout Europe in summer 2020 with VW saying around 35,000 buyers have already reserved a car and paid a pre-booking deposit.

Production is carbon-neutral and green power is exclusively used for energy-intensive battery cell production. Emissions from the entire production process that are currently unavoidable are offset.

"The ID.3 is a high-tech car from a high-tech factory. With some 1,700 robots, driverless transport systems and fully-automated manufacturing processes, Zwickau gives a contemporary insight into the shape of forward-looking high-volume production of EVs," said VW EV chief Thomas Ulbrich.

Components plants in Brunswick, Kassel, Salzgitter and Wolfsburg are also involved in ID.3 production while car manufacturing plants in Emden and Hanover are scheduled to begin building EVs from 2022. The group is also cooperating with Northvolt to set up a battery cell factory in Salzgitter.