VW plans under-$35,000 EV for U.S.: 'We are not scaling back'

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Reinhard Fischer, SVP and Head of Strategy Volkswagen Group of America, during Reuters Events Automotive USA 2023 in Detroit. (Reuters)


DETROIT — Volkswagen aims to bring an under $35,000 electric vehicle to the U.S. market in 3-4 years, while Chinese automaker Nio said it is still “debating” a 2025 entry into North America, senior executives said on Thursday at a Reuters conference.

“We are not scaling back” plans for EVs in the U.S. market,” said Reinhard Fischer, senior vice president and head of strategy at VW Group of America.

“Things have changed” in terms of geopolitics, global supply chains and other factors affecting a decision to sell its cars in the U.S., said Ganesh Iyer, chief executive officer of Nio USA.

Speaking at the Reuters Events Automotive USA 2023 conference in Detroit, Fischer said VW plans to build the under-$35,000 EV in the United States or Mexico.

Options include VW plants in Chattanooga, Tennessee and Puebla, Mexico, as well as a new South Carolina assembly plant planned for VW subsidiary Scout.

VW also is looking at localizing assembly of battery packs for the under-$35,000 EV to qualify for additional incentives under the U.S. Inflation Reduction Act, Fischer said.

The German automaker previously has announced plans to build battery cells in Canada for its current and future North American-built EVs.

At the same conference, Iyer said Nio needs to build infrastructure before bringing electric vehicles to North America and that the company is considering “any kind of partnerships.”

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