Volkswagen's ramping up EV production on a massive scale

VW assigns 20 billion euros in battery orders, speeds EV push

On Tuesday, the company revealed a crucial part of that plan, called Roadmap E, by locking up a $25 billion supply of batteries.

Volkswagen is committed to addressing concerns about diesel pollution as it bounces back from the 2015 emissions test scandal, chief executive Matthias Mueller has said. While the German manufacturer is just one of many auto giants planning to capitalize on the growing EV market, its investment is an aggressive one, especially for the world's largest carmaker.

Another aspect of VW's "Roadmap E" plan will see partnerships with battery manufacturers in both China and Europe in the ongoing development of its electric I.D. range of vehicles, a contract that costs a whopping €20 billion ($24 billion) total.

The German automaker said that "a supplier decision for North America will be taken shortly". He went on to say this rapid roll out 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". But over the past months, Volkswagen's commitments have continued to grow.

As Muller detailed Volkswagen's increasing shift to electric vehicles, it was also reported that after the group's strong earnings in 2017, the company CEO's pay packet, plus additional benefits, surged around 40% to €10.14 million. That's a huge leap from the current three locations. Müller added that from 2019, it plans to offer a new electric vehicle, "virtually every month". As well as this, consumers will be able to choose an electric version of all of its auto models. There is the MEB (modular electric toolkit) and a sports/luxury architecture jointly developed by Porsche and Audi. The company says that research will make EV manufacturing faster and potentially more affordable. The stock had moved as high as €159.66 soon after the market open.

"This is not one of our core competencies", said Mueller, who has faced pressure from employee representatives to invest in battery-cell production.

The company revealed that it is also developing as many as 80 new electric cars, which it hopes to launch by 2025.

As part of Volkswagen's 20 billion-euro push into electric cars, it's setting up a standalone sub-brand for battery-powered vehicles.

"There will be a coexistence between internal combustion engines and electric drive systems for a certain period - I can't tell you how long that will be", Mueller told the BBC in September.



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