Wolfsburg – If ever you needed evidence that electric cars are taking over the world at a rapid pace, consider this news from Germany.
According to the Financial Times, Volkswagen Group Chief Financial Officer Arno Antlitz said the company was planning to cut its range of internal combustion models by 60 percent in Europe by the end of the decade.
This of course applies to the whole group of brands, including Audi, Skoda, Seat, Porsche and Bentley, and not just the Volkswagen brand itself. Antlitz did however state that the company would focus on more upmarket (and hence more profitable) brands such as Porsche and Audi.
“The key target is not growth,” he told the Financial Times. “We are [more focused] on quality and on margins, rather than on volume and market share.”
This likely means that Volkswagen will no longer compete to be the world’s largest carmaker, a title it lost to Toyota in 2020.
At this stage it remains to be seen which Volkswagen models would face the axe, but with the company’s upmarket focus one has to wonder how much longer we’ll have relatively affordable hatchbacks like the Polo in the mix.
Audi has already stated its intentions to ditch combustion engines by 2033, while Porsche for obvious reasons would no doubt aim to stick with ICE for a bit longer, perhaps with the help of new biofuel innovations.
But either way, the road ahead is predominantly electric for Volkswagen, which aims to dominate the battery car market by 2025. Last year the company announced that it would be investing 45 billion euros (R720 billion) in this electric switch.
The company said at the time that it expects fully-electric vehicles to make up 60% of its car sales in Europe by 2030, which explains the maths behind this latest news.