Volkswagen assigns US$25 billion in battery orders in electric car drive

Europe's largest automobile manufacturer Volkswagen Group on Tuesday said it was rapidly expanding its capacity to produce battery-powered vehicles and would equip 16 locations across the globe to do that by 2022.

And, as well as increasing the number of locations where battery powered vehicles will be manufactured from the current three, to 16, the carmaker has also secured battery deals for Europe and China worth €20 billion.

The Volkswagen Group kicked off "Roadmap E" past year which it says is the most comprehensive electrification drive in the automotive industry. Beginning in 2019, Muller promised that there will be a new electric vehicle "virtually every month".

Volkswagen says that pushing for electric vehicles does not mean internal combustion units would die.

"Over the last few months, we have pulled out all the stops to implement "Roadmap E" with the necessary speed and determination", CEO Muller explained in Berlin.

As Muller detailed Volkswagen's increasing shift to electric vehicles, it was also reported that after the group's strong earnings in 2017, the company CEO's pay packet, plus additional benefits, surged around 40% to €10.14 million. Volkswagen had already announced plans to build up to three million electric vehicles annually by 2025 and market 80 new electric Group models.

The Group already has eight BEVs and plug-in hybrids (though, admittedly, they're mostly plug-in hybrids). There is the MEB (modular electric toolkit) and a sports/luxury architecture jointly developed by Porsche and Audi.

Audi's E-Tron SUV will lead the next-generation rollout by launching later this year as a production vehicle - and is in a race with Jaguar to launch the first European BEV in the segment.

The Volkswagen Group has seen significant advancement in its futuristic electric vehicle concepts over the past few years, with new models, such as Bentley's EXP 12 Speed 6e, Audi's stylish e-tron quattro and Volkswagen's ID Vizzion, demonstrating the group's commitment to its new, forward-looking strategy. VIZZION, another member of the Volkswagen I.D. family.

The bulk of the plants, nine, would be added to the EV production roster over the next two years. Its development spend dropped 3.9 percent in 2017, down to €13.1 billion, or about 6.7 percent of its sales turnover, and it plans to lower that to six percent by 2020.

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