VW accelerates ID.4 production with additional factory space
- VW starts production of the ID.4 at the Emden plant in Lower Saxony, which has been converted for vehicles with the MEB platform.
- After Zwickau, Anting and Foshan, the Emden plant will be the fourth global production site for the ID.4, before production at the fifth site in Chattanooga starts this year.
- The Emden plant is set to begin production of the electric sedan, codenamed Aero B, which will target the Tesla Model 3.
The Volkswagen ID.4 now has a fourth home in Emden, Germany, with the automaker only beginning production of its electric crossover a few days ago. The automaker announced plans over a year ago to convert Emden into an all-electric factory, with the ID.4 being the first model to be launched there, complementing existing production facilities in Zwickau, Germany, and Foshan and Anting in China .
“The rapid expansion of production capacities for our successful ID.4 model is an essential part of our Accelerate strategy. It helps us to accelerate the transformation to CO2-free mobility and to create additional capacities to meet the high demand for electric vehicles,” said Volkswagen CEO Ralf Brandstätter. “With our clear commitment to the location, we want to show that profitability and competitiveness are not only possible in the region, but that we can even increase them in the long term.”
The start of ID.4 production in Emden is expected to alleviate some of the production bottlenecks that Volkswagen’s ID range has faced as delivery times for a number of popular models stretched for many months. So far, all US ID.4 units have been produced in Zwickau for Europe and North America, which has put the factory under quite some pressure, while those in Anting and Foshan have only been produced for sale in China.
Later this year, ID.4 production will begin in Chattanooga, with the expanded Tennessee plant becoming the fifth assembly site for the crossover. The vehicles produced there will allow US customers much faster delivery windows and give Volkswagen a crucial manufacturing location for its MEB platform in the States.
But there are also more electric vehicles on the road in Emden.
“In addition to the ID.4, Emden will build another model next year – the AERO B,” said Brandstätter. “Moreover, production of the iconic ID. Buzz at Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles in Hanover. The ID.3 from Wolfsburg will be added from 2023, and then another electric vehicle, the Trinity, will roll off the assembly line at the site from 2026.”
The Aero B is the automaker’s planned electric sedan, which is expected to be close to the Tesla Model 3 and feature the ID. Vizzion concept in 2020. The model is about to make its public debut in production form and has been spotted lapping the Nürburgring in recent weeks.
However, the sedan won’t go on sale until the second half of 2023 as a 2024 model, so there’s still quite a while to wait and it hasn’t been specifically given the green light for the US. We’re having a hard time believing it’ll skip the US, as Volkswagen has needed a Tesla Model 3 competitor here for quite some time, especially at a price that can rival the Model 3.
Emden isn’t the only other VW plant in Germany the automaker is preparing for EV production.
“The group is also investing in the further expansion of the existing MEB production of battery systems, rotors/stators and electric motors in Braunschweig, Salzgitter and Kassel,” added Brandstätter. “The Salzgitter site will be further expanded into a European battery hub. Investments in Lower Saxony will add up to a total of 21 billion euros by 2026 – a level that is also unprecedented in international comparison.”
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