The eco brief. Volkswagen wants to become the world leader in electric cars

An electric Volkswagen being recharged. Illustrative photo. (PICTURE ALLIANCE / PICTURE ALLIANCE / GETTYIMAGES)

Volkswagen will choose between France, Spain and Portugal by 2026. The German automaker plans to open up to six giant battery factories by 2030. The boss Herbert Diess does not hesitate to appropriate the term “giga factories” (giga factories) already used by Elon Musk, the emblematic boss of Tesla, American pioneer of the electric car. Volkswagen’s ambition is clearly to build the European Tesla.

With its partner Northvolt in Sweden, Volkswagen is due to open in 2023 a site for “premium” cells and batteries used in high-end models, as opposed to standardized cells for other models. Northvolt has already received an order from Volkswagen close to twelve billion euros, which shows the ambitions of the German manufacturer.

Volkswagen is not content only to ramp up the batteries, it also has plans for recharging stations. It is one of the brakes on electric mobility today in Europe and VW intends to invest 400 million euros by 2025 in a vast battery recharging network. 18,000 fast recharging points, five times more than currently. Partnerships have already been signed with the British BP, the Spanish Iberdrola and the Italian Enel.

When the American Tesla is building its first plant in Europe, near Berlin, Volkswagen – which many saw ashore after dieselgate – is rebounding today thanks to innovation. The group is based on the increasingly restrictive European legislation concerning CO2 emissions. The German was not let down by the scandal of diesel engines and wants to achieve by 2030 a share of 70% of the production of electric cars in Europe. But these projects come at a cost. Volkswagen announced Sunday March 14 a plan to cut jobs that could affect up to 5,000 jobs to reduce costs and finance investments in electricity.

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