Volkswagen assigns $24 billion in battery orders to speed EV push

Carmakers could restrict sales of polluting cars to meet EU regs

VW Group to reach 10.7 million sales for 2017 – report

VW now has three electric vehicle factories, but that number will increase to nine by 2020 and to at least 16 by 2022, the automaker said Tuesday.

Volkswagen said Tuesday it has committed to spending billions of dollars on electric auto batteries, as the German automobile giant plans to aggressively boost production globally.

Chief executive officer Matthias Müller told the media conference that from 2019 there will be a new electric vehicle coming into production "virtually every month".

The German manufacturer's plans to produce as many as 3 million electric cars a year by 2025 is backstopped by deals with suppliers including Samsung SDI, LG Chem and Contemporary Amperex Technology for batteries in Europe and China.

He added that a third of the auto maker's nine new vehicles for 218, will be 100% electric powered. Those contracts cover batteries for the European and Chinese markets; the company said that "a supplier decision for North America will be taken shortly".

Roadmap E, unveiled last fall, includes plans to build up to three million electric vehicles annually by 2025 and sell 80 new electric models across the Volkswagen Group, the parent company of 12 brands such as Audi, Bentley and Porsche.

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As part of Volkswagen's 20 billion-euro push into electric cars, it's setting up a standalone sub-brand for battery-powered vehicles.

Volkswagen plans to launch the first full MEB auto, the I.D. hatch, in 2020 as the leader for an entire I.D. The company, which has struggled to secure sources of cobalt, a critical component for modern batteries, said that it's working on ways to reduce the amount of the element needed for its electric cars.

"We are making massive investments in the mobility of tomorrow, but without neglecting current technologies and vehicles that will continue to play an important role for decades to come", says Müller.

Despite the fact that Volkswagen is still hurting financially from the emissions scandal, it claims that it wil spend an estimated €34 billion on developing its own electric vehicle technology.

"At EUR 230.7 billion, the group's sales revenue was up 6.2 percent on the prior-year figure, which was a new record", said CFO Frank Witter.

The group's net liquidity at the end of 2017 remained at EUR 22.4 billion even as overall operating profit was reduced by special items from the diesel issue of EUR 3.2 billion in 2017 compared with EUR 6.4 billion in the previous year.

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