Autos

VW “world leader” with electric cars, wants to catch up with software with 27 billion euros

According to a press release, the German Volkswagen Group intends to go “fully on the offensive” with electromobility and digitization in the next few years, together with management and the supervisory board, Bernd Osterloh, chairman of the VW works council. For its new planning round until 2025, the Konzen has earmarked a total of 150 billion euros in investments and research and development, it says. Future expenses for pure electric cars will only increase slightly, but those for software will be doubled over the period.

On par with Tesla – but not when it comes to software

With the ID.3, Volkswagen’s main brand VW has brought the first pure Tesla-style model to the European market that was developed from the ground up as an electric car. Many offshoots on the same new MEB basis from other VW brands such as Audi and Skoda are to follow from the beginning of 2021. Group CEO Herbert Diess has now said that Volkswagen is already “a world leader” with its electric car models and platforms. In the coming years, however, it will be crucial to achieve a top position in auto software as well.

These statements correspond to earlier statements from VW management with a view to Tesla: In battery technology you are now on the same level, in software a few years behind. Production of the VW ID.3 started this summer, but the software was not ready until the first deliveries in September. Another Volkswagen brand recently disgraced itself with the Porsche Taycan by calling the workshops for an update, as Tesla has long been sending regularly by radio.

26 million VW electric cars by 2030

A lot of money should be fixed now. Compared to the previous planning period until 2024, the planned investments in digitization have doubled to 27 billion euros, Volkswagen announced. Previously, they were shown together with hybrid drives at this level, but now they are worth 11 billion euros for their own. The group plans to invest around 35 billion euros in factories and research for electric cars by 2025. So they are the biggest chunk in VW’s future budget, but are only 2 billion euros above the previous plan.

On the occasion, Volkswagen also gave forecasts on the number of all-electric cars that are to be sold in the distant period up to 2030: 26 million units are targeted, 19 million of which are based on the MEB modular system and the majority of the remaining 7 million with the sporting platform PPE. In addition, the group is expected to produce 7 million hybrid cars by 2030; no number for cars with internal combustion engines was given.

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