VW Cross Coupe GTE From NAIAS 2015
Volkswagen Passat GTE Variant and Volkswagen Passat GTE
Despite Tesla's well documented struggles in selling electric cars in China, Volkswagen group is moving forward with its plug-in plans for the Chinese market.
According to Forbes, Volkswagen Group is turning its attention more and more to China and to low or zero emission cars in an effort to surpass Toyota as the world's #1 automaker in sales:
"The group has accelerated investment in cleaner and low emission technologies, in a bid to launch more environmentally viable cars in the future. In China, Volkswagen’s single largest market, the company is looking to launch over twenty electric and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles over the next few years, ranging from small-sized cars to large SUVs. The luxury vehicle division, Audi, which forms a fifth of the automaker’s valuation by our estimates, plans to step-up investment by 2 billion euros ($2.44 billion) to a record 24 billion euros over the next five years, of which approximately 70% will be in new cleaner technologies such as plug-in hybrid vehicles."
20 plug-in electric vehicles over the "next few years." If accomplished, that's impressive.
But (there's always a but, right?) Volkswagen Group consists of several brands (Volkswagen, Skoda, Audi, Porsche, Bentley, Bugatti, Lamborghini, commercial vehicle brands Scania and MAN and so on), so this could mean we'll only see one or two plug-ins per brand/division.
"By accelerating investments, the German car company hopes to gain momentum in the plug-in electric vehicle space, which is estimated to grow at a CAGR of almost 25% through 2023, outpacing the expected 2.6% annual growth for the overall light-duty vehicle market. Apart from China, which is the most important market for Volkswagen volume-wise, the automaker’s push for PEV growth is evident in the U.S., the world’s largest PEV market, and which grew by 22.8% last year to almost 120,000 units."