Volkswagen CEO Herbert Diess confirmed that they are putting all their effort to ready their new MEB platform and launch their new electric vehicles in 2020 – just in time to comply with European and Chinese emission standards.
The German automaker’s leadership said that they will have to bring EVs to market in volumes in order to comply with those standards, which proves that strict emission standards can encourage automakers to invest heavily in electric vehicle production.
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The news comes as Trump’s EPA confirmed that they plan review fuel rules by April 2018 and that they are open to let automakers make more polluting cars at their request.
On the other hand, Europe and China are moving forward with strict restrictions of CO2 emissions of 95 grams and 117 grams per km respectively by 2021.
Diess told analysts at VW’s headquarters last week about the launch of its new electric vehicles with the MEB platform (via Auto News Europe):
“It’s a very tight time plan for 2020, but we need the cars then to comply with our fleet targets. So, it’s a necessity to achieve the launch dates, but it’s well on the way,”
He added that volumes will need to be strong from the start with as many as 400,000 electric vehicles (BEVs and PHEVs) in China in 2020 and ramp up from there:
“We have to sell there close to 1 million electric vehicles by the year 2025 — just Volkswagen — and from this volume base we can really do something in the rest of the world,”
The company is clearly aiming to focus its volume production of electric vehicles where it needs to sell them to comply with the new emission standards.
The first vehicle will be an all-electric compact car based on the I.D. Concept. The vehicle is expected to have over 200 miles of range and be priced competitively with VW’s Golf. It should represent most of the early volume for VW’s new electric vehicle ambitions.
Several other models are expected to follow across its brands, including a new all-electric SUV expected to debut at the Shanghai show next month.