VW signs EV startup as first partner for MEB electric platform
Tuesday 05/March/2019 - 11:09 AM
Europe Auto News
Volkswagen Group has signed German startup e.GO Mobile as the first external partner for its MEB modular platform for electric vehicles.
The fast-expanding Aachen-based company will use VW Group's MEB architecture to "bring e-vehicles to market that complement Volkswagen's model offering،" the automaker said in a statement.
The partners did not say what type of vehicle they plan to develop.
VW brand strategy chief Michael Jost said in a newspaper interview in January that the group was in advanced talks with competitors over making the MEB platform available to others. The aim at VW Group is to achieve a significant reduction in the cost of e-mobility through the widest possible deployment of MEB.
Separately، VW Group said in January that it was exploring joint development of EVs with Ford as part of a wide-ranging partnership.
VW Group plans to invest 30 billion euros ($34 billion) in e-mobility until 2023، it said in a statement on the eve of the Geneva auto show.
The company's EV investment budget outstrips that of its closest competitors، in pursuit of profitable mass-production of electric vehicles، something that no automaker has come close to achieving.
E.GO Mobile helped develop the StreetScooter delivery van that is being produced by a subsidiary of postal services group Deutsche Post.
Among e.GO's other projects، it aims to bring an electric shuttle to market in a joint venture with German supplier ZF Friedrichshafen.
VW says the MEB platform، which will underpin its I.D. family of EVs، will be even more scalable than the MQB architecture used for 80 percent of the group’s combustion engine cars.
By the end of 2022، the VW، Audi، Skoda and Seat brands will have launched 27 MEB-based models. VW Group expects to build about 10 million MEB vehicles over the life cycle of the first-generation architecture.
Because of that flexibility، MEB، which is a German abbreviation for Modular Electric Toolkit، could give VW a decisive edge over industry competitors when it comes to economies of scale، the company believes.