VW Considers Converting 2 German Factories Over To EV Production

vw Electric Cars


Stage is being set for a huge shift.

Volkswagen has big electric plans for the future, if the entire auto industry doesn’t crash. Though it currently only offers the e-Golf and, in Europe, the e-up, its electric efforts should really kick off in early 2020 with the coming of the I.D., the first of several models based on its flexible M.E.B. platform. With the factory situation for that first model sorted — production of the I.D. is slated for a plant in Zwickau, Germany — the automaker is turning its attention to other production possibilities in Europe, and could switch two other facilities to electric vehicle production.

A report in Handelsblatt suggests the VW plant in Emden, which now cranks out copies of the Passat, a model whose peak popularity appears to have passed, could also produce EVs. Several scenarios are being considered, including one that would see Passat production there end completely and the building converted into a sort of Gigafactory, where both EVs and batteries (in partnership with SK Innovation) would be produced.

The other plant that may have a battery-powered future is the facility in Hanover, which presently produces a range of commercial vehicles, including its electric version of a van: the e-Crafter. It is possible that the factory’s output could be switched to a Ford facility in Turkey which would free up the space for other purposes. Similar to its past role, executives are mulling whether to make Hanover the home of “heavier” offshoots of the M.E.B. platform. If that is the case, it would eventually turn out copies of the (very awesome) I.D. Buzz, in both passenger and Cargo form.

Europe isn’t the only continent that will be home to Volkswagen EV production, of course. The automaker has already said it will produce three models in the U.S., with its Chattanooga plant being eyed as the most likely location.


Source: Handelsblatt via Automotive News

Categories: Volkswagen


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54 Comments on "VW Considers Converting 2 German Factories Over To EV Production"

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After the word ‘considers’ I stopped reading and started laughing!

Willful ignorance is nothing to boast about.

The problem is that one day they say how clear their path into the EV future is.
The next day they explain how long everything will take, and how complicated is.
And NOW they are CONSIDERING sites for their EV factories.

At that pace by the time Hanover produces EVs, Gigafactory 4 in Europe will be spitting out Model Ys.

These are addtional sites.

They have 60, they can spare a few.

So what’s the problem with that?

Unless you believe Tesla should be a 100% monopoly vehicle supplier, having multiple manufacturer’s factories spitting out electric SUVs in various colors, shapes and sizes is surely a good thing.

VW knows they have to get there and are discovering the challenges along the way. That is more than can be said for some other ICE manufacturers.

One guy down-voted QCO’s post.

I guess he really wants a Tesla monopoly, and can afford the massive price increases that a monopoly would entail.

So VW is the fastest of the slow kids; well done (slow clap).

They have something like 60 factories that produce dozens of models. You don’t think it might take time to develop a strategy for winding down which models, and which factories to start converting over to their new production of EVs? This happens no matter what new model is being introduced, regardless of drivetrain.

VW has been watching this EV change coming at them for ten years and doing little to get their affairs in order.
Should we have sympathy for the willingly obtuse?

We hope.

It does seem A WHOLE LOT OF TALKING and a lot less doing.

Zwickau and the M.E.B. hatch seem the most certain.

OR AT LEAST the most talked about.

In three months I want to see Golf-sized mules running around in camo or I’m writing VW off.

Auto development takes about 4 years from blank slate to vehicles being produced.

So of course there is just talk before they are produced.
It’s not a bakery.

True, but they are in year 3 of talking about serious production without much to show for it.

In other words, everything is going exactly as planned so far… Your point?

The VW group makes the e-golf, e-up, e-crafter and the e-tron. . That is an OK start. Give it a few month and we’ll see how things progress.
Many models will be released, and electric trucks and buses will be released too.

They are already on the road disguised as Tiguans and similar.

Actually VW stands for Volkswagen.

(⌐■_■) Trollnonymous

yes, just like a wife thats been beaten & cheated on several times and stays……

my how ignorant.

Why do you continue to link to your erroneous article on launch delay ?

“We are currently looking into it. Thank you.” was your repsonse then, when the facts surfaced.

Regarding that — here is what I found.

Original press release.
“It is due to go on sale in 2020, with a range of up to 373 miles”
“Launch will happen in 2020”


Press release right before the article about the so-called delay on this website (press release on Oct 4, and article on Oct 6).
“The ID. family is set to make e-cars affordable for millions of people. The first vehicles of this new generation of e-cars will make their debut in 2020.”


There is the question when production starts (e.g. it could start in Dec 2019 and go on sale in Jan 2020). This is how Wards put it, that production was delayed from 2019 to 2020.

However, looking at the press release in the second link, I see no mention of when production will take place. It seems like someone at Wards auto (or whoever wrote the first “delay” article) had a reading comprehension problem.

Here is the Wards Auto article that came out the same day as the second link.


I see no delay base on the press release that came out around the same time as the delay articles.

Yes, but on InsideEV, VW is the enemy.

VW actually mentioned November 2019 for the start of production a few times — both before and after the “OMG delays” canard by Wards Auto…

I wasn’t aware of all this controversy, actually. I just saw the post and linked to it. I’ll remove it, since there doesn’t seem to be any corroborating evidence other than a statement from Ward’s (which is usually pretty trustworthy).

And just so we’re clear, no one on our staff thinks VW is the enemy. I’ve been critical (not here) of their slow start, but I’m looking very much forward to all these new models and think they have a good chance of being an industry leader EV-wise.

Is this follow on by VW, to the Tesla Gigafactory announcements, the Fahrvergnügen moment in the VW (Verboten Wunderkind) chapters, of ICE OEM EV history?

VW is making huge, albeit forced, investment in a fast charging infrastructure in America. VW is still only in the second year of that ten year investment. Anyone that thinks VW is not going to position themselves to take advantage of this investment is a fool.

The Electrify America network should be sufficiently built out by 2020 for VW to use as a marketing tool to sell massive numbers of fast charging electric vehicles. 2020 sounds like the right time for VW to hit the market with a slew of new battery electric vehicles. If VW doesn’t take advantage of the charging infrastructure they are building someone else will and VW knows this.

I don’t think they’ll focus a lot on US for the next few years.

They will focus mainly on China, without any doubt. If VW produces 100.000 Evs in 2020 for Europa and North America together, we are lucky.

They talked about 150,000 in 2020 (100,000 under the “ID.” brand) — IIRC *not* including the Chinese joint ventures…

Which is a smart move imho. The NEO will have a hard time competing with the Model 3, but the Neo might actually beat the base Model 3 to the EU market (depending on how many people will go for the mid/long-range option.)

These are in completely different classes. The Neo will be smaller, have different body shape, less premium features (presumably), but will be significantly cheaper.

Excellent point.

This is why I think a bunch of us could get in the same (virtual) room and have a really interesting conversation about which of the Legacies has the greatest potential to be a Very Major Player in EVs in the US. Right now, even with all the promises from Nissan, Ford, etc. about bringing out X EVs in Y years, I think VW would be my pick thanks to their new platform plus the chargers.

I would say battery investments as well. The number one driver of success will be battery costs, and therefore vehicle’s cost competiveness.

The chargers will be open to anyone. (Assuming they go with CCS…) Also, most legacy makers (including Nissan, Ford, and GM) supposedly have dedicated BEV platforms in the works as well. VWs should be ready about a year earlier — but by the time they make it to the US, the others should start arriving as well…

In the end, I think it will mostly come down to who invests in serious production capacity.

Agreed… There is no doubt VW is all in on electrification, and by the product cycle standards of legacy ICE manufacturers, moving quickly.

Yes, Tesla is faster and setting the pace, but the assumption others are “doing nothing”, whilst preparing to wind down their companies is clearly incorrect. Not all may survive, but many will.

VW is also spending big UNFORCED money on an Electrify Canada charging network and on a EU charging network…

Show me this fast-growing list of fast chargers. VW does a lot if posturing. They’ll probably build the minimum th6ey legally can get away with.

There’s no verve or passion in this from VW. It is all smoke and a mirror or two. Show me the small M.E.B. hatch mule running around in camo, or a microbus or two and I’ll start to believe they will at least build 20,000 of these per year.

Time for the compliance gestures to stop, the concept cars to stop, the incessant blathering to media to stop. Nothing but action will say this is anything near where VW bites the EV bullet and just makes cars and batteries.

https://ionity.eu/ – 400 125kWh+ stations by 2020 (~40 built or being built) https://www.electrifyamerica.com/ 500+ 125kWh+ stations by 2020 (~40 built) And Electrify Canada which has no website, but around the same number of charging stations are planned as supercharging stations in Canada. By the end of next year North America and Europe will have almost as many VW influenced DC fast charging stations as Tesla will have Supercharging stations. VW aren’t like Tesla. They can’t just build a $70k car and expect it to sell in big enough numbers for them. They need to produce an EV car that works AND is affordable to their major markets – the sort of people spending $20-30k on a Golf sized vehicle. That’s a much greater challenge than high end sedan. None of the manufacturers so far have been able to build a small/mid sized cheap vehicle that’s economic for most people looking for that class of vehicle. The closest so far is the Bolt, but even that is around $15k more than the equivalent ICE. The next closest is the Kia/Hyundai, but with a similar price differential. The only alternative is produce shorter range vehicles like the Leaf, which is also around… Read more »

Are you seriously considering the EA dcfc’s as VW’s?

How dumb are you?

? EA is money from VW, as mentioned in the first post.

Dumb is the person not reading the first post in this topic I guess….

The fact is EA is VW. Sure, it’s court ordered but VW would be silly not to take advantage of the system they are setting up, in the same way they would be silly to not take advantage of the IONITY and Electrify Canada systems they are (not court ordered) spending money on.

(⌐■_■) Trollnonymous

“The fact is EA is VW.”

EA is the result of the penalty/fine imposed on VW for their Guilty Filthy dirty cheating ways. It was a monetary punitive damages/fine and the funds belong to the US NOT VW.

You’re acting like if drug dealers had to pay a fine for their trafficking and dope sales to kids and the local law enforcement used those funds to fix Schools then the drug dealers should be patted on the back for “drug influenced” fixing of the schools.

Yeah you sound THAT DUMB!

He said…
[North America and Europe will have almost as many VW influenced DC fast charging stations]

Must be a VW fanboy/investor. Note how he seems to try and inject/associate VW in the EA infrastructure to make it look like it’s them putting in the effort.

Just pathetic. Probably paid by VW to troll here like a few of them I’ve noticed lately.

Unlikely. He is a big hydrogen advocate amongst other things — and I’m not aware of VW having any ongoing hydrogen investments?…

He does seem to have a prevalent pattern of talking up pretty much anything could be detrimental to Tesla’s success, though… Make of that what you will.

EA’s first-round investments should result in highway coverage that approaches Tesla’s *current* network in most regions — but Tesla is not standing still. And the next round for EA isn’t due before 2 1/2 years later… They won’t catch up any time soon — if ever.

The obvious reason is VOLUME.

Economies of scale means make a lot and thge cost per unit is decreased greatly, Parts suppliers give big discounts to manufacturers who buy lots of parts.

Profit margins on F-150 pickup trucks are incredible. Why? Ford builds well over one million per year. GM builds 22,000 Bolts per year. Tell me how that will result in lowered costs.

You target Tesla as some bad guy for building premier market cars. This is what they have to do to make money on expensive lithium battery packs.

Model 3 is showing a profit if they can get 5-7,000 out the door per week. It’s VOLUME that will usher in the $35,000 Model 3. No ICEmaker is planning MASS production of EVs yet. Just talk. Volkswagen is talking the loudest. Lets see if anything results from it.

VW is not passionate about anything, it is a huge, old, German conglomerate with the sole purpose of making money.
It has none of Elon Musk’s vision or passion about changing the world.

However, this will not stop VW from changing to EV production once it is clear that this is where the money is. They will do so with all their power, money and experience, and they will produce and sell millions of EVs.

How naive do you have to be to believe Elon “vision and passion” matters at all.

Stop worshipping companies and their leaders.

Well the boardmeeting will be held in the middle of November according to Handelsblatt, so we will likely hear about the decision by the end of the month.

“We’re 100% maybe considering in 3-5 years committing to perhaps looking at the potential of entertaining a scenario that may or may not involve a game-plan of coming together to explore a future that quite possibly has a realistic expectation of something electrically vehicle related.”

I will file this where I usually file VW stories. In the circular file where they belong.

I realy hope they would bring EV production to Emden. They visited the Highschool (Hochschule Emden-Leer) 2 years ago to present their plans in order to get the Highschool on board. I attendet to that presentation. Their motor line up points to a reluctance hybrid motor… in 2025… 8 Years after the Model 3… but they optioned a battery factory in Emden as well. I had the chance to talk with the lead technical manager for ev production and an after sales manager. They know their stuff, but it seems they’ve being blocked from the top. Regardless i think it would be good for my region if they would futureproof that factory. Would safe a lot of jobs around my hometown.

Interesting: when I saw mention of Emden, my thought was that it would be a good place for a battery factory, since they use mostly wind power… Then I saw the source article talking about this very point 🙂

They suggest that it would be too expensive though, unless they get massive subsidies…

There is less hot air in a hot air balloon than a statement from VW..
It’s over a year wait for an egolf in Canada and then I’m stuck with VW reliability….