The Volkswagen Group has presented a new strategic plan that places a special emphasis on e-mobility. VW and its sister brands intend to launch more than 30 battery-electric vehicles (BEVs) over the next ten years. The group estimates that by 2025, EVs could account for as much as a quarter of the global passenger car market, and its own BEV sales will be between two and three million units.
Other new initiatives include investment of “several billion euros” in autonomous mobility solutions, and streamlining the company’s modular architectures to reduce complexity and increase efficiency.
“We are streamlining our modular architectures to make even better and more disciplined use of their benefits,” said Volkswagen Group CEO Matthias Müller. “Instead of twelve variants as planned, we will work with just four major architectures: one each for economy vehicles, volume models, the premium segment and sports cars. This will cut complexity significantly and increase the commercial benefits.”
The Volkswagen Group plans to develop battery technology as a new competency.
“Battery technology is the key to e-mobility,” said Müller. “It accounts for 20 to 30 percent of value-added for fully electric vehicles. We will need 150 gigawatt hours of battery capacity by 2025 for our own e-fleet alone, which would make for a massive procurement volume.”
Batteries aren’t the whole ball game, however. Legacy ICEs, which Müller thinks will still power two-thirds of new vehicles in 2030, remain an important part of VW’s strategy, as do fuel cells. “The fact that we are now focusing so clearly on e-mobility and battery technology does not mean that we will scale down or even suspend our work on developing fuel cells. Here, too, we intend to stay on the ball and will be ready when the time is ripe.”