BERLIN (Reuters) – Volkswagen will be able to build 1 million electric vehicles a year in China in 2023, CEO of the Volkswagen Passenger Cars brand Ralf Brandstaetter told Nikkei on Wednesday, boosted by a new plant in Anhui province.
The plant, a joint venture with China’s Anhui Jianghuai Automobile Co (JAC) first announced in 2019, is set to produce 300,000 electric cars a year, with production starting in 2023.
Together with production from two further joint venture plants – one with FAW Group, and one with SAIC Motor – this should bring total capacity to the 1 million mark, Brandstaetter said.
Volkswagen was not immediately available for comment.
The German automaker sold 70,625 of its ID electric vehicles in China last year, missing its goal of selling 80,000 to 100,000 cars, with production also affected by regional COVID-19 outbreaks in addition to chip-related issues.
Volkswagen’s China chief Stephan Wollenstein told a briefing in Beijing in January https://www.reuters.com/technology/volkswagen-says-it-sold-70625-id-electric-cars-china-2021-2022-01-11 that the automaker would like to double sales of its ID battery electric vehicles this year but cautioned that low semiconductor supplies could hamper its efforts.
Brandstaetter is due to take over Volkswagen’s China business from Aug. 1.
Under his watch, the carmaker will ramp up local development in China, Brandstaetter told Nikkei.
“In the past, our approach was to develop in Germany and localize in China,” he was quoted as saying. “But this approach will be changed significantly by setting up more local resources for R&D, especially for software, to be faster, to be more independent in China.”
(Reporting by Victoria Waldersee; Editing by Chris Reese)