Volkswagen has teased a “one-of-a-kind concept car” that the carmaker says signals the brand’s entry into a new era. The electric vehicle, which the German behemoth sees as forming the basis of its zero-emissions future, is being touted as an idea as revolutionary as the Beetle, when it was introduced seven decades ago. When it enters production, this vehicle will be the first model to be based on Volkswagen’s new modular electrification kit (MEB).
VW already has zero-emissions vehicles like the e-up!, which churns out 82bhp and 210Nm from its electric powertrain, but the maximum range between charges is around 150km. The new car aims to get around these limitations thanks to a new battery pack that will help it achieve a range of anything between 400 to 600 kilometres. It is also expected to be a hatchback about the same size as the Golf, with enough room in the cabin for a family.
The brand had also showed another electric concept earlier this year, the BUDD.e microbus concept, which was seen as part of attempts to distract everyone from the diesel emissions scandal. However, the carmaker announced significant restructure measures in the following months, with more focus on electric vehicles and autonomous driving technology. It also announced its plans to come out with more than 30 electric vehicles by 2025. It also estimates that up to three million electric-only vehicles will be sold in this period, and that by 2030, electric vehicles will account for one third of the Volkswagen group’s entire sales.
To aid this plan, Volkswagen is also rumoured to be building its own battery manufacturing facility, as suggested by CEO Hebert Diess, who said last month that for Volkswagen to make millions of electric cars, it will be necessary to either produce its own batteries or buy batteries made in Germany.
We’ll bring you more details of the electric concept as they emerge after its unveil at the Paris motor show.