Volkswagen: Next-Generation Phaeton To Be Long-Range Pure Electric Flagship Car


Volkswagen Phaeton Will Get Overhaul, All Electric Guts

Volkswagen Phaeton To Be “Redefined” As An All-Electric Flagship

Separately today, we discuss in detail a major plug-in related announcement made by Volkswagen in the wake of its Dieselgate scandal.  (which can be read here)

But for now, this all-electric Phaeton revelation from VW is the breaking news as part of that new plug-in commitment:

Phaeton redefined – the future is electric

The Volkswagen Phaeton has embodied the brand’s technological competence and brand ambition from the first generation onward. The future generation of the Phaeton will once again be the flagship for the brand’s profile over the next decade. In light of this, the Board of Management redefined the current project. The specification features a pure electric drive with long-distance capability, connectivity and next-generation assistance systems as well as an emotional design.

In North America, The VW Phaeton Is Identified As The Audi A8

In North America, The VW Phaeton Is Identified As The Audi A8

This new Phaeton looks to be the first of VW’s new “MEB electric toolkit”, which Volkswagen describes as:

“… (a) standardized system will be designed for all body structures and vehicle types, thus allowing particularly emotional vehicle concepts, and will enable an all-electric range of 250 to 500 kilometers.”

That’s right folks, Volkswagen is going pure electric in its flagship model.  This long-range electric car will head VW’s future electrification efforts.

If you happen to reside in North America, the VW Phaeton may not ring any bells with you – which is because the car is marketed solely as the Audi A8.

As both the A8 and Phaeton are sold in Europe (and elsewhere) we are unsure what this means for the Audi, but we suspect that it will also be at least available as a fully electric offering as well.

Stay tuned….

Categories: Volkswagen


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43 Comments on "Volkswagen: Next-Generation Phaeton To Be Long-Range Pure Electric Flagship Car"

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Well several commenters here at InsideEvs can rightly “Pat themselves on the Back”.

Things are transpiring almost exactly as many of you guys thought they would.

Just this morning, AutomotiveNews has stated re: VW

1). $1.1 Billion reduction in investment overall to pay for their Diesel ‘restitution’.

2). Introduction of an All Electric VW Phaeton, to be their FLAGSHIP product.

3). SCR (selective catalytic reduction) method to be emphasized on new New Diesel emission controls.

4). Emphasis on lower cost PHEV’s in general.

5). 300 km (186 mile) range of many lower cost all-electric models.

I’d say many of you predicted the future with this company pretty good!

PHEVs and BEVs have been trending at VW since before the scandal. It’s purely a function of regulatory environment and the price and performance of batteries.

I think so too. Its not like they just changed course as a result of the ‘Big Stink.’ More like, just emphasis.

Sweet, and make it superchargable

Yeah, that’s what I say too. It’s soon time to see some maistream affordable EV’s coming on the scene that will charge at at least 100 kW or better yet 150 kW.

About time

Long range VW? Pointless unless they also embrace trip superchargers. Hopefully they will be the first non-Tesla company to wake up to this reality.


If this goes down Europe won’t need the supercharging network!

Yeah, and if a 1000 mile range BEV battery for $45 goes down, we won’t need a high speed charging network at all.


I hope you understand that chances of that happening are slightly lower than fastned building a bunch of charging stations?

Great plan.

We don’t need another proprietary “supercharger” network. We need everybody to get behind a standard that is not controlled by one company. VW has the muscle to get things moving in Europe through sponsoring and political lobbying (but probably less so in the US and Asia). I’m not too concerned about the charger infrastructure there. In the US we need the big 3 to get behind it.

Hmm. When I read this quote: “The specification features a pure electric drive with long-distance capability” I tend to think they are suggesting a range extender.

So will VW be the first of the automakers to release a PHEV SUV?? Hopefully this spurs others *coughGMcoughFord* to speed up whatever timelines they have in place for a PHEV SUV.

What, the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV which was launched almost two years ago doesn’t qualify?

*in the US

I believe VW will offer a Plug-In SUV after Mitsubishi in the US. Hard to beat the Mitsubishi April 2016 date with VW concepts only.

VW was already first to market in the US with the Cayenne PHEV. The Volvo is also out now.

i tend to share your skepticism: 250-500 km of AER is a stated objective of the MEB toolkit; that sounds like long term thinking and not something that you are going to see in the short term. if Volkswagen really had a ready-to-go platform, they would have stated a much more definite objective: 250-500 km is a pretty wide range.

since Volkswagen said that they were committed to introducing PHEVs, my guess is that you are first going to see PHEVs. Volkswagen will probably introduce the first long range BEVs under that Porsche project that was previously announced.

Knowing VW they may very well make an electric car that secretly runs on gas.


That would be hydrogen stripped from hydrocarbon sources (i.e., Oil, Natural Gas, etc.). Toyota is already pushing that. :p

And Republicans would line up to buy it.

Heh, “Redefined”…

Funny how fast some things can change, with the proper motovation… 😉

Interesting article on the retrofit labor and expenses to VW…

Yes, well, the fact that the VW diesel engine owners have absolutely no incentive to get their cars fixed, may be a silver lining for VW. So like a good little drone I get my Jetta fixed and it now runs more poorly with less power and consumes more fuel. Why would I even think of doing that?

Because states may not let VW owners renew their registrations without proof of the fixes being performed (especially CA).

Perhaps coal burning WV won’t care about the fix. :p

I could certainly understand why states would do that. So basically if not forced to get it fixed most people won’t.

Oh boy!
Just what we need.
Another freakin’ flagship!

Wake me up when there’s a Model 3.

The ‘smoking gun’ now that was an apt phrase.
Inaccurate death and injury reports added to the charges against VW is not too surprising.

This is the full text: Wolfsburg, 2015-10-13 Volkswagen Brand Board of Management takes strategic decisions • Accelerated implementation of the efficiency program creates room for reorientation • Streamlined processes leverage further cost-saving potential, including cuts in fixed costs • Investments to be reduced by 1 billion euros per year compared with planning – combined with prioritization of projects for the future • Product decisions formulated • New Phaeton will be electric • New Modular Electric Toolkit planned The newly-formed Volkswagen Brand Board of Management took further strategic decisions at a special meeting. CEO Dr. Herbert Diess announced major product decisions: a reorientation of the diesel strategy with the most advanced technologies, the development of a standardized electric architecture for passenger cars and light commercial vehicles, and a new approach for the next generation of the Phaeton. Investments are to be reduced by some one billion euros per year, the efficiency program is to be accelerated. Dr. Herbert Diess underscored: “The Volkswagen brand is repositioning itself for the future. We are becoming more efficient, we are giving our product range and our core technologies a new focus, and we are creating room for forward-looking technologies by speeding up the efficiency program.”… Read more »

Well, VW’s people “stood united” on faking emissions testing for nearly a decade. So yah… Whatever. Try and use your powers for good, this time…

“The specification features a pure electric drive” – Does “specification” imply that this is an optional electric drivetrain, like the current Golf?

What we need are long-range eGolfs, eJettas, eTransporters and ePassats.

Would-be ePhaeton buyers already have the Tesla Model S+X.

Nice. Can’t wait to read that next post, you tease.

The Phaeton and A8 are different cars and both exist in Europe. So it doesn’t mean that the US will get an electric A8 for sure.

Wow, it’s like I’ve died and gone to EVangelist heaven!

I didn’t think VW would do it. I thought they’d dig in their heels and double down on gasmobiles.

I don’t think I’ve ever been so happy to have been proven wrong in my entire life!

[Pushmi-Pullyu does his happy dance… it ain’t pretty! 🙂 ]

They have not completely forsaken diesel technology, if you read the entire release.

* sucking on a big grain of salt, here… *

Yes, I understand.

As ffbj posted above:

“Its not like they just changed course as a result of the ‘Big Stink.’ More like, just emphasis.”

And of course, given that VW has proven to use outright deception as a business strategy, we have reason to be skeptical.

But it was never a realistic scenario that any large legacy auto maker was going to go “all in” for converting their entire line of vehicles to EVs overnight; not with battery tech still so limited. A shift in emphasis is the best we can hope for at this stage of the EV revolution. And if VW is committing to making their flagship model an EV, then that’s much better than I expected; it’s a much bigger shift in emphasis than I thought was possible, given the reality of business.

Just my opinion, of course.

A Volkswagen Phaeton EV? That could be pretty awesome!

At first, I envision a PHEV with a 75-mile AER, and a 2.0 liter gas-powered generator. Let’s call it the VW Phaeton GTE.

Just to give you all some facts from the newspapers here in Germany: 1.) The VW Phaeton, which did not sell very well here in Europe and USA, but sold well in China, was not a real eye-catcher: I always was in doubt if it was a Passat. So far, it was motorized with different V6,8,12 gasoline and V6,10 diesel engines up to 450hp. Now VW’s plans are to offer it exclusively as a pure BEV with a 95kWh battery to give it a range of 500km. The electric components will be the same as for the AUDI SUV which was announced on the recent Frankfurt IAA for 2018. The Phaeton is said to be on the market by 2019/20. My guess is that Tesla Mod S will have 150kWh by then and it will not sell any better than today, but at least – it is a first little step into the right direction. 2.) Germany’s research minister Barbara Hendricks, who runs an AUDI A8 duty car so far, wants to more push the purchase of electric cars in order to achieve the claimed government’s goal of having at least one million EVs on Gernany’s roads by 2020. Besides… Read more »

Thanks for the perspective from Germany, lots of context can be lost traveling over the Atlantic.