The Volkswagen Group and SAIC Motor Corporation Ltd, Volkswagen’s original joint venture partner in China, have agreed to expand the main plant of their joint venture Shanghai Volkswagen (SVW) in Anting to support the local production of electric vehicles. Full localization of the Volkswagen Group’s electric vehicles in China will be gradually implemented.
With the development and local production of electric vehicles and components, Volkswagen is taking the next step in the further expansion of its research and development activities in China. The company said that it will also intensify its local research in the fields of fuel cells and plug-in hybrid vehicles as well.
A new Volkswagen brand C-segment model will be produced at the Anting plant, to the west of Shanghai, beginning in 2016. In about four years, a new electric vehicle model based on Volkswagen’s Chinese bestseller, the Lavida, is due to roll off the production line at the Anting plant—this will be the first fully electric vehicle produced at the plant.
These agreements form part of the total investment of €22 billion (US$24.5 billion) in China planned by the Volkswagen Group together with its joint ventures by 2019. The largest investment program in the Chinese automobile industry to date is to be funded from the cash flow of the joint ventures Shanghai Volkswagen and FAW-Volkswagen.
Together with its joint ventures Shanghai Volkswagen and FAW-Volkswagen, the Volkswagen Group delivered a total of 3.7 million vehicles in China in 2014, representing an increase of 12.4% over the previous year. The Volkswagen Group has 29 vehicle and component production locations in China.
Today’s agreement lays the foundation for the further expansion of our commitment to Chinese society and the environment. We have been at home in China for more than 30 years. Over the next four years, we plan to localize more than 15 different electric vehicle models in China, including plug-in hybrids and fully electric vehicles.—Prof. Dr. Jochem Heizmann, Member of the Board of Management of Volkswagen AG and President and CEO of Volkswagen Group China