The VW Group does not see combustion engines as a cost-effective alternative to electromobility in the medium term. The new head of the Volkswagen brand, Thomas Schäfer, expects vehicle prices to rise significantly as a result of the planned EU emissions directive Euro 7. Combustion vehicles would be 3,000 to 5,000 euros more expensive due to the more complex exhaust gas cleaning, he said in an interview with WELT AM SONNTAG. “With a small car, these additional costs can hardly be absorbed. So entry-level mobility with combustion engines will be significantly more expensive,” he said. Starting prices at 10,000 euros will no longer exist in the future. “Individual mobility is a basic need and must remain achievable in the future,” said Schäfer. The solution is electromobility.
From 2025, the group wants to bring four electric small car models onto the market, announced Schäfer. In addition to the ID.2, there will be another model from VW, a Skoda and a Cupra. “We plan to offer the ID.2 for less than 25,000 euros. That will be a super attractive price for an electric vehicle in three years,” said Schäfer, who has been head of the VW brand since July 1 and is responsible for the volume brands VW, Skoda and Seat/Cupra on the Group Board. The ranges of the vehicles would be at least 350 to 400 kilometers. “That’s the psychological sell point at the moment.”
Schäfer left open whether there will be a new edition for the VW Golf, Europe’s best-selling car. Because the political course is set for electromobility and the demand for it is developing rapidly, “we will have to see whether it is worth developing a new vehicle that does not last the full seven or eight years,” he said. That is “extremely expensive”. They are currently working on an upgrade of the current Golf 8. It has not yet been decided whether a Golf 9 will come onto the market after that: “We will know more in twelve months.”
When it came to competing with major competitors such as Toyota and Stellantis, Schäfer said that VW was “not about market share, but about profitable business”. Nice numbers in rankings are not decisive. “In the past we have also afforded niche products in the urge to become the world’s largest car manufacturer. Today it’s all about removing complexity from the system,” said Schäfer. He wanted to “make the brand shine again. To do this, we need core models that run really well, like the Beetle or the Golf.”