Wolfsburg (dpa) – Concerns of a long dry streak are great in the auto industry: Volkswagen is now countering the difficulties of the Corona crisis and changes of direction in the mobility transition by investing billions in more.
In general, spending will stagnate from 2021 to 2025, but will grow significantly in future areas. The summary:
– Electric mobility: after last year’s goal of 33,000 million euros, the company will now take another step forward with 35,000 million euros in the next five years. The first representative of a completely new development electric vehicle series has just started with the ID.3 compact car, which will soon be followed by the small ID.4 SUV and the larger ID.5. Plants around the world are being converted to make these types of products. By 2030, around 70 pure electric models and 60 hybrid models should be on the group’s market. 19 million of the 26 million vehicles built will be based on the standardized electric construction kit, most of the remaining 7 million on a new basic frame for luxury cars. In ten years, the VW Group also wants to have produced an additional 7 million hybrid vehicles.
– Software and digital: the goal is to program a large part of networked car operating systems and significantly increase the vertical range of manufacturing, a core project of CEO Herbert Diess. Autonomous driving and new services also require new interfaces between the car, the manufacturer and the service provider. The five-year amount spent on digitization of € 27 billion has roughly doubled compared to the 2019 schedule. An internal group software organization creates new jobs, while jobs are removed or converted to areas traditional. Also in production, more and more processes are being executed with digital technology.
– New technologies in general: the VW Group will spend around 73 billion euros until 2025 inclusive on the new core issues that will occupy the automotive industry in the coming years. That is also significantly more than in the 2019 plan (60 billion euros) and almost half of the estimated total of 150 billion euros. The Chinese joint ventures FAW and SAIC are not yet included.
– Works and models in Lower Saxony: the Group’s country of origin represents more than 16,000 million euros this time, most of the total for Germany (20,000 million euros). The partial sum of 4.5 billion euros for the light commercial vehicle brand caused a stir. It is not only about its own electric plans such as the ID.Buzz minibus, the expansion of the Polish plants or the cooperation with Ford, but also a new high-class electric model (“D-SUV”) that is being manufactured in Hannover for others. The group’s brands will be built in three different variants. The group is spending at least 680 million euros on this. It could be the “Tesla Fighter” of Audi, Porsche and Bentley, with which VW wants to attack the American pioneer in the luxury class. Prime Minister Stephan Weil (SPD) said: “These will be the flagships of electromobility for the whole group.”
The main plant in Wolfsburg is also getting a big slice of the pie, including a successor to the Tiguan and a new large SUV similar to the Tayron model made in China. VW is also gathering all variants of the flagship Golf model at headquarters. According to the works council, more than three billion euros will go to the world’s largest car factory. Weil and works council head Bernd Osterloh see good opportunities for their own electronic model of Wolfsburg in the next planning round.
As expected, Emden will have to do without the Passat starting in 2023, which is now going to Bratislava in Slovakia after a location in Turkey has been closed. As a replacement, the location on the North Sea coast receives another all-electric model with the Aero after the ID.4. One billion euros will be invested. The Osnabrück plant will receive more funding for the T-Roc convertible, according to Weil, there could also be prospects for electric mobility here.
The internal supply plants also receive new money. In Braunschweig, where battery systems, axles and steering systems are produced, more than 870 million euros will be spent. The Salzgitter motor plant, which is currently also building its own battery cell factory, will receive around € 800 million. According to the company, around one billion euros are invested in battery technologies.
– Other plants and models: € 1.2 billion is earmarked for Saxon’s Zwickau, Dresden and Chemnitz locations, primarily to expand the capabilities of electronic models. The transmission plant in Kassel received 1.3 billion euros, which is also mainly about components for electric mobility. Details of the investments in the US and China, as well as the distribution of Audi, Porsche, Skoda, Seat, and heavy commercial vehicles from MAN and Scania have not yet been released. In Mexico, production will be expanded by 198 million euros.