Volkswagen To Build e-Golf In China With Locally Made Batteries

3 months ago by Mark Kane 27

2017 Volkswagen e-Golf

Volkswagen apparently intends to introduce the all-electric version of Golf in China, but first needs to prepare local production and switch to Chinese battery supplier in order to get costs down and bring strong local incentives to the table.

Volkswagen e-Golf

The e-Golf is currently produced for Europe and North America in Wolfsburg, Germany, and as noted, exporting to China would be to costly when also adding on China’s import tax and the actual cost of transport.

In China, conventional Golfs are already being assembled in Foshan, at FAW-Volkswagen’s joint venture plant.

The German manufacturer however still needs a Chinese battery supplier, and Contemporary Amperex Technology Ltd. (CATL) is pegged for the job.

With sales of some 4 million cars in the country, Volkswagen will need to acquire some 320,000 zero emission credits (at 8% requirement) in 2018.  However, all-electric cars (with a range of 350 km) receive five times more credits, so it would be minimum of 64,000 if VW changes up the specs.

The e-Golf with 35.8 kWh battery is rated at 300 km under NEDC (or 124 miles EPA).

“Volumes of electrified vehicles will play a major role as early as next year, when draft legislation under discussion could take effect. Under the new requirements, credits would be assigned for each plug-in hybrid or battery-electric vehicle sold depending on its zero-emissions range. The cars would be counted toward meeting a moving sales target for what China calls new energy vehicles (NEVs). Those targets are 8 percent for 2018, 10 percent for 2019 and 12 percent for 2020.

Should a manufacturer sell 1 million cars in China, for example, under the credit system it would not have to sell 80,000 NEVs, but rather 16,000 BEVs with a minimum range of 350 kilometers since these count fivefold or 40,000 plug-in hybrids, or a mix somewhere in between. Last year, Volkswagen Group sold almost 4 million vehicles in China.”

source: Automotive News

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27 responses to "Volkswagen To Build e-Golf In China With Locally Made Batteries"

  1. ffbj says:

    I think VW is smart to do exactly what China’s policy is designed to do, get companies to build facilities and use suppliers in their country.
    Otherwise you are just get hammered by the competition and destroyed by taxes & tariffs, and possibly penalties too.
    Whining about impossible to meet quotas will fall on deaf ears.

    1. Michael Will says:

      Yep. Follow the global leadership of china and profit.

      I visited ShenZhen last week and was amazed to see so many BYD electric cabs (e6) and private cars with other byd as well as some teslamodel X and S.

      Stark contrast to my visit to New York last month were all cabs are shaken legacy gas cars with miserable acceleration and you see very few teslas and almost no other electric car makers.

      Of course an unfair comparison since shenzhen is more like California which has a ton more, but nation wide and public policy wide the US are hopelessly behind.

      1. Benz says:

        The global leadership of China.

        OK

        Are there already any Gigafactories for the production of battery cells and battery packs in China?

        If yes, then that would be awesome.

        1. Mikael says:

          Yes, there are. You can’t do half a million EV cars, 150k EV buses and 40 million EV two wheelers per year without them.

          BYD alone are matching Tesla (or rather Panasonics work for Tesla).

          1. Benz says:

            If there is enough production capacity for battery cells and battery packs (for Plug-In vehicles) in China, then that is a positive thing. Most of the Chinese demand for Plug-In vehicles will then be served from production in China.

            But that means that the car manufacturers from Europe and US will have to invest heavily in China to obtain a slice of the marketshare.

            Ford was recently in the news with regard to a joint venture with a Chinese car manufacturer.

          2. Benz says:

            40 million EV two wheelers per year!!!

            Awesome

            That’s much better than those noisy scooters here in The Netherlands.

            Why hasn’t anyone imported a few of those Chinese EV two wheelers to Europe yet?

            1. Mikael says:

              There are a few e-bicycles being sold in Europe too, now basically every bicycle store, hardware store and IKEA sells at least one model.

              There are some electric mopeds (many models coming from China) an MCs too but those are tiny markets to begin with and electrics only have a tiny portion of that.

              In China they are the daily driver and for many the only vehicle they have.

              Now if only other moped/MC dense and largely populated countries like Indonesia, the Philippines, Vietnam and Thailand could do the same.

        2. Another Euro point of view says:

          Benz, come one…

          (Thanks Mikael for taking the time to write the obvious)

      2. guyinacar says:

        You don’t understand New York. NYC was one of the first hack fleets to become almost entirely hybrid. But that led to Uber. In the language of NY State Senate Bill S6326A (about to land on Governor Cuomo’s desk): “Recent competition into the marketplace for transportation has taken advantage of at the overregulation of taxis in New York City.”

        In short, too many damn laws. When you have Albany actually writing IN THE NEW LAW that there are too many taxi laws, well, there may be too many taxi laws.

        The reasons medallion owners don’t use Teslas in the hack fleet are many. I highly doubt *any* current Tesla vehicle could withstand the abuse, find effective charging, or be serviced efficiently. Even in the face of a mountain of incentives and regulations from City Hall and Albany, pure EVs are rarely used.

        Taxi owners in New York aren’t brand snobs. If a vehicle could survive 250k miles/year in 15 minute trips, driven 24/7 by two drivers, then the medallion owners would use it. Right now, Tesla ain’t there. The Tesla fleet doesn’t stand in its own merits in New York.

  2. Benz says:

    VW has got to make a move.

    I think that the VW E-Up! would sell well in China.

    Many Chinese people live in a large city. A large number of them don’t require a long range EV at all. About 80 km per day is very often more than enough for them.

  3. speculawyer says:

    What’s with this rule that every foreign company needing to have a joint venture in China. They should be forced to get rid of that law. It made sense 30 or 40 years ago when they were just a developing nation.

    But now they manufacture more than anyone else and they STILL have that rule. Why doesn’t the orange birther clown do something about that?

    1. Nada says:

      It is a pretty messed up rule but Clinton signed on the dotted line…
      And now he will most likely roll over like the Clintons, Bushes, and Obamahs rolled over for China…

    2. Mikael says:

      The rule still makes sense. Even if the chinese car companies are improving fast there is still a long way to go until they are fully able to compete with the traditional car companies.

      Another 5 or 10 years, then I think the rule will disappear.

  4. Benz says:

    How many Plug-In vehicles will have to be sold in China in 2018?

    Must be more than a million, I guess?

    1. trackdaze says:

      Market is well over 20million so its closer to 2 million.

      Looks like they will do 500-600 this year. I suspect they will holdover sales this year to qualify next year and stagger gas cars end of next year qualify.

      1. Benz says:

        If it ends up being like this:

        2017: 500,000
        2018: 1,500,000

        That would be a relively very big increase (+200%).

        Amazing

        Where will they get all those battery packs from (for that many Plug-In vehicles)?

        1. Mikael says:

          From one of the many battery factories probably..

    2. Mikael says:

      2 million credits. Which means 2 million >50 km range PHEVs, 1 million short range BEVs or bare minimum 400k >350km long range BEVs.

      There will most likely be a combination of those and ~800k vehicles in total for 2018. Or about a 50% increase compared to 2017.

      1. Benz says:

        Even with “only” 800,000 Plug-In vehicles sold in China in 2018, China will be ahead of both the US and Europe.

        Then in 2019, they surely will reach more than 1 million Plug-In vehicles sold in China, I think.

        1. Mikael says:

          It will, most definitely in absolute numbers but also in percentage of sales.
          China will be at ~2% for 2017 and Europe slightly below that.

          But it will be interesting to see what happens in 2020 when the EU regulations come into play. As you most likely know all the German/French/Swedish etc. manufacturers announcements for models coming in 2019/2020 is because of that. Expect a big jump in plug-in sales during that period.

  5. Don Zenga says:

    That’s where the stick is. Goodness at least China is forcing, they have to, to cut the foreign oil and pollution.

    And what does VW have for USA?
    DIESEL
    No eGolf’s for USA.

    1. Another Euro point of view says:

      Maybe they go where they sell the most cars and possibly where litigation risks is not about the highest on this planet ?

    2. Benz says:

      “No VW E-Golfs for USA”?

      What do you mean?

      In the first seven months of 2017 VW sold 2,195 VW E-Golfs in the USA.

      1. Don Zenga says:

        Those eGolfs are MY-2016, please check in VW website and any auto portal.
        Still some 200 MY-2016 eGolfs are in market, only after they are sold, MY-2017 or MY-2018 may be launched.

    3. Quebec 100% EV says:

      VW is trying to sell off all remaining 2016 e-Golfs (the crappy shorter range ones)before they announce that the 2017 (now perhaps 2018) e-Golf will be available in the USA in large numbers. Until then they are being trained to dodge the question and mislead the US public into thinking they aren’t coming to USA for a long time.
      But rest assured despite the said cheap trickery, they will very soon be available in the USA.
      Here in Canada they released them in healthy volumes since the 2015/2016 e-Golf was never sold here to begin with, so they could launch the improved 2017 version right away in healthy volumes since they didn’t need to worry about having to trick the public in order to sell off the old model cars.

  6. Benze says:

    Tesla also still has to decide on where in China they want to realise their production facility.

    As a foreign car manufacturer it’s probably better to simply comply with the Chinese policy, otherwise there will be no chance to obtain a slice of the Chinese Plug-In market.

  7. Martin T. says:

    VW sells soul to communist China to use outdated Chinese spec ev batteries. On the plus side this is not vapor ware but the blessing will be it is only for Chinese consumers.

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