When the world's carmakers and automotive media assemble in the City of Lights in October for the Paris Motor Show, Volkswagen will reportedly reveal an electric car with a 300-mile range—the first physical manifestation of VW's plan to blast into the world of futuristic mobility with dozens of new EV models over the next nine years.
The news comes from well-respected electric vehicle website Elektrek, which cites an interview with VW CEO Hebert Diess in the German magazine Wirtschafts Woche. (The Drive was unable to find the original Wirtschafts Woche story in question, but we trust Elektrek on this.)
According to Elektrek, Diess said the new VW electric vehicle to be unveiled in Paris will be roughly the size of a Volkswagen Golf, but pack the storage capacity of a VW Passat—which is to say, a bit less cargo room than a Golf. The CEO reportedly said the EV will offer a driving range of between 400 and 600 kilometers, which works out to 248–372 miles. Even if the car lands smack in the middle of those figures, that's a range of 310 miles. While the car is expected to technically be a concept, it should be a very close approximation of a production model scheduled to reach showrooms in the next year or two.
The move into electric mobility is one of the cornerstones of Volkswagen's "Strategy 2025," its nine-year corporate road map designed to lead it out of the troubles of Dieselgate and into the unknown future of the automobile. In addition to significant investments in autonomous vehicles and ride-sharing, including a $300 million investment in Uber competitor Gett, Strategy 2025 includes a plan to crank out as many as 3 million electric cars a year by the middle of next decade. To do that, VW A.G. plans on releasing more than 30 new EV models between now and 2025, all built around three new electric vehicle platforms like the one underpinning the BUDD-e concept van seen above.
In addition to the announcement about the new electric car, Diess reportedly said Volkswagen will need to either buy batteries in Germany or build its own, much as Tesla plans to do with its Gigafactory. So if you happen to own a lithium mine, you might want to give the nice folks at VW a call. They probably wouldn't mind speaking with you.