Car manufacturer is building an electric car without a partner, planned for 2027

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Written By Maya Cantina

Wolfsburg. Volkswagen is abandoning a partnership with other manufacturers for its small electric car, scheduled for 2027. The vehicle, which costs about 20,000 euros, must now be developed alone. The world premiere is scheduled for 2027, Europe’s largest car manufacturer announced on Tuesday after a board meeting in Wolfsburg. However, a planned collaboration with Renault did not get off the ground.

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The vehicle must be produced in Europe. “We combine this with a clear commitment to Europe as an industrial location,” said CEO Oliver Blume, according to the statement. “It is about entry-level electric mobility from Europe for Europe.” VW has not yet named a specific production location.

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The group has great hopes for the model with which the Wolfsburg company wants to complete its electric range and make the transition to the electric entry-level segment. “To make electromobility widespread, attractive vehicles are needed, especially in the entry-level segment,” says Thomas Schäfer, head of the Volkswagen core brand. “Our brand promise is: electromobility for everyone. This promise is now being fulfilled in the Core brand group.”

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From 2033, only electric cars will be for sale

In addition to a VW model with the working title ID.1, which Schäfer announced in March, a Škoda version is also planned, according to “Business Insider”. The currently cheapest VW electric car ID.3 starts at just under 40,000 euros, the ID.2all planned for 2026 is expected to cost around 25,000 euros. VW discontinued the E-Up last year for less than 30,000 euros. The ID.1 is now intended to close this gap. From 2033, the core brand VW only wants to sell electric cars in Europe.

Herbert Diess, chairman of the board of directors of Volkswagen AG, poses during a photo shoot.  (to dpa

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According to VW, work on the ID.1 is already well advanced. “We are already in the middle of it, we know what the car should look like,” said brand boss Schäfer in March. Despite the low price, the intention is to “set standards in the entry-level segment”. However, the target price is a major hurdle. “It is an enormous challenge economically,” says Schäfer. “This task has become more demanding due to rising energy, material and raw material costs.” Due to the high battery costs, a price of 20,000 euros can only be achieved for very large quantities.

Talks with Renault failed

VW had therefore also explored collaboration with other manufacturers to achieve larger volumes. However, an initially planned collaboration with Renault failed to materialize. The French manufacturer confirmed in the spring that there were discussions about a common small car platform for electric VW and the Renault Twingo. A week ago, Renault boss Luca de Meo told Reuters that the talks had failed. According to business circles, VW works council boss Daniela Cavallo in particular is said to have spoken out against the idea that the model should only be built by Renault subsidiary Dacia in Romania.

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VW itself has not yet responded to the discussions with Renault. In the spring, the company only talked about four scenarios that would be investigated for the production of the small car. CEO Blume had not ruled out a collaboration with another car manufacturer, but did not mention any names.

Production in Germany unlikely

VW left open where exactly in Europe the ID.1 would be built. However, production in Germany is considered unlikely. For cost reasons, VW had already given the ID.2all to subsidiary Seat in Spain, where it will roll off the production line from 2025 together with sister models from Cupra and Škoda.

Experts consider the high prices for electric cars to be the biggest obstacle to further expansion of electric mobility. At the IAA Mobility motorcycle show in Munich last September, Chancellor Olaf Scholz called on manufacturers to include cheaper models in their ranges. The increase in e-mobility “will not work if there are no offers that are affordable for many citizens,” said the SPD politician. And the manufacturers “of course have an important share in this through the price”.

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RND/dpa

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