By Victoria Waldersee

BERLIN (Reuters) – The Volkswagen brand will only produce electric cars in Europe from 2033, its boss Thomas Schaefer said on Wednesday, committing to the earlier date in its previous 2033-2035 target.

Schaefer said in the coming decade the VW brand would narrow down the number of models on offer to focus on core models, with the aim of raising the profit margin for all volume brands – Volkswagen, SEAT, Skoda, and commercial vehicles – to 8% by 2025.

“Do less, but better,” Schaefer said, speaking at an event in Berlin.

Bringing vehicles from different brands into the same factory saves costs, Schaefer said: “We have historically a lot of waste in the system we can take out.”

The VW brand would also move its production focus from concentrating on a single model per factory to “platform thinking”, Schaefer said, using the same basic design for different models to allow economies of scale.

The carmaker is targeting an entry-level electric vehicle for 25,000 euros or less. Schaefer said improving and standardising battery chemistry and format was the key to achieving this goal, as well as producing at scale.

“The only company that can scale on this territory at the moment is us,” the chief executive said. “The focus is a clear standard across the brands, and full scale.”

(Reporting by Victoria Waldersee; Editing by Riham Alkousaa and Jane Merriman)

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