Volkswagen has confirmed an investment to the tune of $50 billion in developing autonomous and electric cars. The company is currently attempting to pin itself on the expanding map of the futuristic driving tech by selling its upcoming I.D. compact in the same price bracket of a diesel-powered Golf.
Talking at a news conference on Friday Volkswagen supervisory board Chairman Hans Dieter Pötsch stated that the company’s plans for the next five years were to make the brand “a worldwide supplier of sustainable mobility.”
In the same breath, the German auto giant has also decided to convert three of its German facilities into dedicated EV manufacturing plants. On Monday, Automotive quotes Diess who stated that VW could build 50 million electric vehicles globally across its brands, beginning in 2020, and had battery sourcing agreements for them.
Following this, a company spokesperson clarified that the numbers given by Diess were overstated. “Diess meant to say 15 million, not 50 million cars,” the spokesman said.
While announcing its plant renovations a company executive confirmed labour cuts which he said will be done by the company in a socially acceptable way. Currently, around 436,000 industrial jobs in Germany are toes to building petrol and diesel engine vehicles. A combustion engine, which features about 1400 components employs more people compared to electric powertrains which have only 200 components.
The first ID electric car is set to exit the production line in Zwickau in 2019, as the plant ramps up to a production capacity of 330,000 electric vehicles.