With new electric vehicles coming to market at an increasing pace and demand growing rapidly, securing battery suppliers is becoming a top priority for automakers serious about electrification.
In order to do that, VW created a ‘task force’ with battery supplier LG Chem.
The German automaker is reportedly meeting biweekly with the South Korean battery manufacturer to make sure they stay on track.
By 2025, they hope the production plan will lead to 3 million electric vehicles per year between all their brands (VW, Audi, Porsche, etc.).
Thomas Ulbrich, the VW brand’s management board member responsible for electric mobility, told reporters in Dresden, Germany (via Auto News Europe):
“There are risks in third- and fourth-tier areas, especially in these new technologies. This is the reason why we created this task force with LG Chem,”
Ulbrich said that they see battery cell supply as essential to their EV ramp up:
“The battery cell availability is for us the base really to produce the cars, but we are taking care of it.”
Volkswagen says that it has already awarded $48 billion in electric vehicle battery cell contracts.
I’ve always said that the best way to see how serious a legacy automaker is about electric vehicles is to see how serious they are about battery supply.
Since the Dieselgate scandal, I think VW is taking battery cell supply very seriously.
Tesla is arguably taking it more seriously than any other automaker through their Gigafactory effort, but I see some similarities with VW’s effort here.
It sounds like they are working with LG Chem to assure that their own suppliers are also ready for the upcoming important production ramp.
That’s not unlike what Tesla is doing with Panasonic.
But like most things electric with VW, it’s always a few years away.
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