Skoda, Volkswagen and Cupra electric city cars to be manufactured in Martorell
Volkswagen Group CEO Herbert Diess confirms group's zero-emission city cars will be made at the Catalan plant
Although it was already an open secret, Volkswagen Group CEO Herbert Diess confirmed yesterday during his visit to what will be the group's new battery factory in Sagunto that his automotive group will manufacture Skoda's, Volkswagen's and Cupra's city cars at Martorell plant, taking advantage of the fact that the three models will use the same platform, the same batteries, the same mechanics and the same technology.
The new electric batch would not be all that new within German industrial group, since it would replace the current set formed by Volkswagen e-Up!, Skoda Citigo and Seat Mii Electric, but using a new, more modern and evolved platform called MEB Entry and derived from the one now used by models such as the Skoda Enyaq and Volkswagen ID.3, for example. Unlike the current models, however, Cupra, Skoda and Volkswagen electric cars will be more aspirational and complete, despite the fact that the evolution of the price of lithium and the fact they share a platform and investment ought to allow entry models for each car to settle around €20,000. In fact, Cupra's urban electric vehicle will most likely be the successor to the Seat Ibiza that we have known so far, and some reports suggest it could be called Cupra Raval.
According to Diess, "the aim of this decision is to facilitate the transition to electric cars for new generations of drivers", and noted that the entry into production of the three new electric models will be in 2025. In addition, this electric strategy will be reinforced by the new battery plant in Sagunto, which will generate some 3,000 direct jobs and should be fully operational by 2026.
The Sagunto battery plant will have an annual production capacity of about 40 GWh and will occupy an area of about 200 hectares, very well connected thanks to its proximity to motorways (AP-7 and A-23), the port of Sagunto and the railroad line linking Valencia with Catalonia and the rest of the continent, and which should allow the plant to be easily linked to the Martorell and Landaben (Navarra) plants, where Volkswagen may also manufacture electric vehicles for crossovers or four-by-fours. The German group has announced a total investment of around €10bn to put the first lithium battery plant in Spain into operation, which, according to Volkswagen, will operate with electricity obtained entirely from renewable sources, as part of its commitment to become a manufacturer with a zero carbon footprint in its economic activity.