Volkswagen announced on Thursday its plans to build electric vehicles in North America by 2020.
Last year, Volkswagen Group made public its plans to build 20 electric cars and 20 hybrids by 2020. Such projects were confirmed on Tuesday when the German company announced it would be working on electric vehicles projects in four years.
“We believe that this country, especially in urban mobility, will have a very strong shift from petrol engines into hybridization and electric cars. We are heavily investing in this one, including production in this North American region,” said Hinrich Woebcken, the new head of Volkswagen US division.
During the announcement, it was also unveiled that Volkswagen won’t be building more diesel-empowered vehicles for the U.S.
No more clean-diesel projects for the US
Likewise, Volkswagen Group announced on Tuesday that there wouldn’t be more of its diesel cars in the U.S. anytime soon.
Hinrich Woebcken, Volkswagen’s of America CEO, told Automotive News that the company is not stopping diesel, in fact, as long as diesel works to set up cars, the company will continue using it. However, Woebcken said that when it comes in reality, Volkswagen won’t bring back again to the U.S. the high amounts of diesel it was used to make available in the country.
Volkswagen’s official retirement of clean-diesel engine projects is a significant change for the company. In the past, the Volkswagen bet its entire future on its Turbocharged Direct Injection (TDI) idea.
The Turbocharged Direct Injection (TDI) technology has been developed and produced by Volkswagen group. It is about a design of turbodiesel engines featuring turbocharging and cylinder-direct fuel injection. Nowadays, TDI engines are widely used in Volkswagen’s passengers and commercial cars, especially in those vehicles sold in Europe.
Further on, Woebcken expressed the challenge of accurately achieving federal emissions standards in a few years. However, the company is currently going through its massive emissions cheating scandal since it was made public last September.
“The regulations from 2019-2020 are going to be so hard that we would have had to find an alternative to a certain extent anyhow,” he said. “The diesel crisis is forcing us simply to think about this earlier,” said Woebcken.
This means that at least for now, there won’t be available more Volkswagen’s diesel-powered cars in the United States.
Three lawsuits against Volkswagen
After Volkswagen’s announcement of its future electric vehicles, it was reported that the company received three separate lawsuits against Volkswagen New York, Massachusetts, and Maryland. Three different states are suing the company because it allegedly violated their environmental laws and disguised its diesel scheme.
An incident that appears to be pretty much like last year’s emission scandal. It is time for Volkswagen to start over with new projects to clean up its soiled reputation.
Source: Tech Crunch