Volkswagen intends to launch the first electric cars based on its MEB platform by 2020 with a skateboard battery pack (which quite honestly seems to be the way every long range BEV maker is going).

According to a recent report, the MEB platform will enable the VW group of brands to offer long-range all-electric models in multiple configuration, including RWD and AWD.

Volkswagen I.D.

Volkswagen I.D.

Other main features included in the project (shared between various models) will be connectivity and autonomous driving capability.

Developing a generic electric vehicle platform is also important from economic stand point, as Volkswagen says the prices of the upcoming production I.D. (with a 250+ mile range) is to be comparable with diesel Golf (€30,000, $33,500) - something which can only happen with help of volume of scale.

MEB will support not only compact cars (think Golf-sized) but both a class lower, and also a class larger - such as with Passat or Tiguan compact SUV sized cars.

Volkswagen I.D.

Volkswagen I.D.

According to reports, the main sales volume for the platform will come from China.

"Batteries. The MEB extends its open approach to batteries, as well. Senger observed that Volkswagen will need a global sourcing strategy for batteries, in collaboration with its suppliers. Because Volkswagen expects the main sales volume of MEB vehicles to be in China, the company will need to have suppliers in China.

China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT) has announced that that any plug-in vehicles applying for a Chinese government subsidy had to contain a battery manufactured by one of 25 Chinese-owned companies listed on MIIT’s so-called “White List.” LG Chem and Samsung are not on the list. Hence, Volkswagen will partner with a battery provider (or providers) that is (or are).

As well, particularly with its targeted sales volume of one million vehicles, Volkswagen will need other suppliers elsewhere. This will be facilitated, Senger said, by the design of the battery system within the MEB. The key, he said, is simplification."

source: Green Car Congress