The German manufacturer wants to turn the page with the smoke raised by its Euro 5 TDI engines around the world, and convince us that the future lies in a massive support for electromobility. In less than a decade they intend to sell one in four cars with electric propulsion.
That represents a giant leap compared to the current situation, in which they only have two 100% electric models in the flagship brand, e-Up! and e-Golf, which are not exactly standing out among sales on the European continent. At the moment the key to success is the Nissan Leaf, which has already sold almost 250,000 units since the end of 2010.
Volkswagen describes its future model as one called to write pages in automotive history, as it did seven decades ago the Beetle, the best-selling car of all time and the longest on sale. It will be similar in size to a compact, but with the roominess of a sedan, thanks to the lower positioning of the electric batteries under the floor.
Before such a revolutionary model reaches the streets, in addition to the Nissan Leaf we have to talk about the Renault ZOE (current electric bestseller in Europe), the BMW i3 and the next to arrive, the Opel Ampera-e. Tesla is not going to appeal in the compact segment yet, its efforts are focused on the Model 3 mid-size sedan, which starts production next year, and a derivative crossover.
Before the TDI scandal, the Volkswagen Group enjoyed better credentials on an environmental level, with much emphasis on reducing carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions. Some will remember the "Think Blue" movement, one of the eco-image - or greenwashing - strategies of the carmaker, one of the world's leading R&D investors.