With the launch of the new e-Golf model at this year’s Frankfurt Motor Show, along with the smaller e-Up! model, Volkswagen AG begins a high-voltage push into the emerging battery-car market. And that’s just the start, senior VW officials promise.
Add in models as diverse as the plug-in hybrid Audi A3 Sportback and the new battery-assisted Porsche 918 supercar, and Europe’s largest automaker begins the process of rolling out a planned 40 hybrids, plug-ins and full battery-electric vehicles, or BEVs, by 2018.
So aggressive is the Volkswagen campaign that CEO Martin Winterkorn is projecting the maker will become the largest manufacturer of battery-based vehicles in the world, noting, “We have developed the know-how for electric motors and battery systems at our own components plants, we have recruited 400 top experts for electric traction and qualified almost 70,000 development, production and service employees in this new technology — the biggest electrification training program in our industry.” (more…)