Volkswagen to spend $50B on electric auto ‘offensive’

Volkswagen is going all in on electric

The figure represents roughly a third of the group's planned expenditure over the period, underscoring how serious VW is about closing the gap with Asian competitors and the likes of USA tech giant Tesla.

Volkswagen is converting three of its German plants from internal combustion to battery auto production as it pivots away from diesel vehicles in the wake of its emissions scandal.

Volkswagen will be investing a total of 44 billion euros in future technologies by 2023 with about 3/4 of the money reserved for e-mobility alone. With less complexity and fewer model variants, VW may be able to produce the vehicle in roughly half the time needed to assemble a Golf hatchback, according to the people.

Mr. Poetsch said the I.D. compact would be about the cost of a Golf diesel today, which is priced at /////EURO SYMBOL///// 23,875 ($35,800) in Germany, according to Volkswagen's website, and goes up as options are added.

VW's supervisory board will meet on November 16 to discuss the production overhaul and related investment plans for the next years. "Efficient, modern production facilities will be the key".

The first ID electric auto is due to roll off the production line in Zwickau in 2019, as the plant ramps up to a production capacity of 330,000 electric vehicles.

Around 436,000 industrial jobs in Germany are tied to building petrol and diesel engined vehicles.

VW has promised to guarantee jobs at both sites until 2028.

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Diess additionally confirmed that VW was "currently in talks" on teaming up with USA competitor Ford in building light commercial vehicles, which would involve sharing factories. In addition, the planned construction of a factory in Eastern Europe.

German automaker plans to produce electric cars, dive into autonomous driving and provide new mobility services by 2023.

Diess said partnerships were becoming necessary to achieve cost savings at a time when the industry is undergoing an expensive transformation.

A more rapid adoption of electric vehicles could threaten up to 100,000 jobs, the study warned, adding that regardless of the final number, there will be suppliers that simply won't be able to adapt their business model, especially among small- and medium-sized companies.

Looking further ahead, VW said it was still "exploring the potential" of manufacturing its own batteries for electric cars as concern grows in Europe about the Asian dominance in battery cell production.

Volkswagen's pivot towards e-cars has in part been spurred by efforts to shake off its ongoing "dieselgate" scandal. Last year, the ratio shrank to 6.4 percent.

The group said last month it was on track to beat last year's revenues of 231 billion euros.

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