VW Spells Out its EV Ambitions

Volkswagen is staking its reputation on BEV powertrains becoming the “dominant drive technology” for the passenger car.

That’s the vision expressed in the automaker’s first Power Day presentation that envisages a world where automotive batteries will become cheaper and less complex to produce while increasing in performance and range capabilities. Its roadmap to this battery future includes a raft of commitments to making BEV technology the leader in vehicle propulsion. Key ambitions feature:

  • Unified cell and related aspects to reduce battery costs by up to 50%;
  • The construction of six gigafactories with a total production capacity of 240 GWh to secure its battery supply in partnership model by 2030;
  • “Northvolt Ett” in Skellefteå, Sweden, to be expanded up to 40 GWh;
  • Salzgitter planned as the second gigafactory with a production capacity of up to 40 GWh;
  • Collaboration with suppliers to be intensified to recycle up to 95% of raw materials;
  • The five-fold expansion of charging infrastructure with an extra 18,000 fast-charging points throughout Europe;
  • Development of an energy eco system with energy management to become a new business sector;
  • Staggered investments with partners are being sought to maintain strategic financial targets.

Herbert Diess, chairman of the board of management of the Volkswagen Group, said: “E-mobility has become core business for us. We are now systematically integrating additional stages in the value chain. We secure a long-term pole position in the race for the best battery and best customer experience in the age of zero emission mobility.”

Cross-brand responsibility for this technology roadmap will lie with Volkswagen Group Components led by its CEO Thomas Schmall. He added: “We aim to reduce the cost and complexity of the battery and at the same time increase its range and performance. This will finally make e-mobility affordable and the dominant drive technology.”

— Paul Myles is a seasoned automotive journalist based in London. Follow him on Twitter @Paulmyles_

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