Volkswagen needs to increase its output of electric cars to meet CO2 regulations in the EU. But reportedly, the company continues to work through software problems with its upcoming new ID.3 EV model expected this summer. Now an internal VW document reveals that production of the E-Golf, VW’s current but discontinued best-selling EV, will be extended to around September. Customer deliveries in Europe will be pushed until the end of November.
An internal document obtained by Nextmove, a German electric-car rental company, indicates (about 3:15 into its YouTube video):
The last week of production for the e-Golf is currently planned in calendar week 45/2020. From today’s perspective, the final orders will be allowed on Friday, October 2, 2020 — with a factory delivery week 47/2020 and smaller (delivery status D).
In December, Volkswagen celebrated the production of the 100,000th E-Golf. The company said the E-Golf would be discontinued in 2020 to pave the way for the introduction of the ID.3 in summer 2020. At the time, Volkswagen did not reveal the exact month that E-Golf production would stop. But the timing is indicated in the internal document:
Nextmove’s news service warned that the exact dates are not certain. Deliveries could happen through December. And if ordering is brisk, customer interest could be cut off earlier, depending on the remaining inventory.
The report also indicated the VW is offering generous discounts on the model to bring the price below €25,000 ($27,000). The company began dropping the E-Golf’s price, by about €4,000, a year ago.
Last week, VW told Electrek that the market launch for the ID.3 is on schedule for summer 2020. But the company added that production would start slowly, with the first units to be vetted by employees before getting turned over to customers. VW wrote:
The production of the ID.3 1ST started (as scheduled) with only a few units, and when we will be approaching the launch, production will be severely ramped up.
The next stage will be supplying vehicles for the pre-bookers. Our objective is to simultaneously deliver the 30,000 ID.3 1ST vehicles to customers in all pre-booking markets in Europe in time for the launch in summer 2020.
Meanwhile, Volkswagen sold 3,695 E-Golf units in Europe in February. The electric Golf beat the Tesla Model’s 3,481 sales, while the Renault Zoe led all other electric models with 6,391 sales.
VW also sells the e-Up! electric minicar and GTE plug-in hybrid.
Germany’s Süddeutsche Zeitung newspaper last week cited internal sources declaring that VW is struggling to get the necessary software expertise to resolve its issues. And that it held a private meeting with Daimler to possibly develop a common operating system.
VW also last week trumpeted brisk sales of the pure electric version of the e-up! minicar, claiming to have 20,000 orders on hand. That’s another potential sign of the company shifting some focus from its new EVs to the electric models currently on sale.
In the US, the all-electric ID.4 crossover is expected to go on sale by the end of this year.
Changes in the E-Golf’s production schedule are unlikely to change things in the US, where fuel-efficiency standards are not as stringent. Last October, Volkswagen removed the E-Golf from its list of available US models for 2020. Allocations for 2020 instead were diverted to Canada. However, the few remaining 2019 models are still being sold. VW reported only 361 sales of the E-Golf in the US for the first three months of 2020, down 58% from a year ago.
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