Volkswagen: reorienting diesel strategy, new Modular Electric Toolkit, MQB push on PHEVs, electric Phaeton
The newly-formed Volkswagen Brand Board of Management has made a number of major strategic product decisions, including a reorientation of the diesel strategy to use the most advanced emission aftertreatment technologies; the development of a standardized electric architecture (Modular Electric Toolkit, MEB) for passenger cars and light commercial vehicles; and an electric next-generation Phaeton.
Further, Volkswagen will accelerate its efficiency program and cut spending by some €1 billion per year.
The Volkswagen brand is repositioning itself for the future. We are becoming more efficient, we are giving our product range and our core technologies a new focus, and we are creating room for forward-looking technologies by speeding up the efficiency program. We are very aware that we can only implement these innovations for the future of the Volkswagen brand effectively if we succeed with our efficiency program and in giving our product range a new focus.—Volkswagen CEO Dr. Herbert Diess
Diesel emissions strategy. Volkswagen will only use SCR and AdBlue technology with diesels in Europe and North America as soon as possible. Diesel vehicles will only be equipped with exhaust emissions systems that use the best environmental technology.
In the run-up to the emissions scandal, Volkswagen had been using NOx traps in addition to SCR-based systems on some vehicles, depending upon size. For example, even the new EA288 diesel (earlier post)—apparently not tainted by the software defeat device (earlier post)—had been designed to use NOx storage or selective catalytic reduction system (SCR) singularly or in combination depending upon the needs of the vehicle (e.g., weight) and market regulations.
Further development of the Modular Transverse Toolkit (MQB). There will be a major development thrust for the proven MQB standardized technical toolkit, where Volkswagen Passenger Cars holds responsibility for development within the Group network. The focus is on plug-in hybrids with an even greater range, high-volume electric vehicles with a radius of up to 300 kilometers, a 48-volt power supply system (mild hybrid) as well as ever more efficient diesel, gasoline and CNG concepts.
A new standard with regard to connectivity and driver assistance systems is to be defined.
MEB electric toolkit. Volkswagen will develop an MEB electric toolkit (Baukasten) for future use in compact segment vehicles based on the experience gained with existing vehicle architectures. This will be a multi-brand toolkit suitable for both passenger cars and light commercial vehicles and will thus leverage synergies from other electric vehicle projects in the Group. (Earlier post.) The standardized system will be designed for all body structures and vehicle types, thus allowing particularly emotional vehicle concepts, and will enable an all-electric range of 250 to 500 kilometers (155 to 311 miles).
Phaeton redefined—the future is electric. The Volkswagen Phaeton has embodied the brand’s technological competence and brand ambition from the first generation onward. Volkswagen intends for the future generation of the Phaeton to once again be the flagship for the brand’s profile over the next decade. In light of this, the Board of Management redefined the current project. The specification features a pure electric drive with long-distance capability, connectivity and next-generation assistance systems as well as an emotional design.