Volkswagen has announced its broad plans for the North American market over the next few years. They involve a major push into EVs, as well as $7.1 billion in investment for production and development on the continent. Products include new SUVs and likely a sedan.
In total, VW brands (that includes Porsche, Audi and more) will be launching 25 new electric models through 2030. The company is also targeting 55% of its sales by 2030 being electric cars, with internal combustion vehicles being fully phased out sometime in the 2030s. For the VW brand specifically, the near-term additions to the lineup will be American-built ID.4s this year, followed by the German-built ID. Buzz in 2024. VW will be revealing an electric sedan “soon,” codenamed Aero B, according to Volkswagen of America CEO Scott Keogh, and it should be headed to the U.S. market. Starting in 2026 will be the first of some new electric SUVs. That initial model will be one sized similar to the Atlas. Some of these later SUVs will also be built on the upcoming Scalable Systems Platform (SSP), one of which will be something sized closer to the ID.4.
What you won’t be seeing much of in the continuing decade are VW hybrids and plug-in hybrids. Keogh said that VW is focused more on making an “all-in” transition to EVs rather than developing hybrids. However, he did say that there is likely potential for mild hybrid assist systems to boost efficiency on internal combustion engines. And as for that EV transition, Keogh expects the customer shift to that expected 50% to 60% sales range to be fairly quick assuming there aren’t major supply issues, but beyond that could be more difficult.
Besides product plans, VW announced major investments in North America. As mentioned earlier, it will be spending $7.1 billion in the region on both manufacturing and development. The Chattanooga, Tenn., factory has already had significant investment and that will continue. It will begin building the ID.4 this year as part of its transition to EV manufacturing. VW will also add EV manufacturing capacity both for vehicle assembly and parts production at its Mexican factories in Puebla and Silao. Battery manufacturing facilities are in the works too, and eventually battery recycling facilities. Furthermore, VW will be adding to its North American product development teams focusing on body styles and interiors designed for the region. The aim is to create vehicles better suited for the market and getting them designed and to market more quickly. It’s also creating a battery “center of excellence” in California and continuing partnering with outside companies for battery development such as QuantumScape with solid state batteries.