German automaker Volkswagen is reportedly deciding where to build a new North American factory dedicated to electric vehicle production according to the company’s new head for the Americas.
Reuters reports that German automaker Volkswagen plans to open a new electric vehicle production facility somewhere in North America, according to the company’s new head for the Americas. Scott Keogh, the recently appointed CEO of Volkswagen Group of America stated that a new electric vehicle production facility will be built in order to begin production of a new electric vehicle under the Volkswagen brand which will reportedly be priced between $30,000 – $40,000 and is due to be released in 2020.
Keogh told journalists at the Los Angeles auto show: “We are 100 percent deep in the process of ‘We will need an electric car plant in North America,’ and we’re holding those conversations now.” In an announcement earlier this month, Volkswagen stated that they plan to invest 44 billion euros ($50 billion) into growing auto fields such as developing electric cars and autonomous driving by the year 2023.
Keogh stated that initial sourcing of Volkswagen’s new electric car will take place outside the United States in order to meet the 2020 production timeline, but after that the vehicles will be produced at the new North American facility. The company has not released any information about what locations it is considering for the plant.
Volkswagen could pose a serious threat to one of the most popular electric car manufacturers, Elon Musk’s Tesla. Musk’s electric-car manufacturer has dealt with a number of setbacks in recent months including the departure of over 40 executives this year and failure by the company to lower its price point, an area in which Volkswagen could definitely outperform the independent Silicon Valley firm.
“The market timing actually is quite perfect,” said Keogh. “You need to have this intersection of, ‘Can you get costs down enough that you can produce a car at that price point, make enough money, have the technology capabilities that this is a car that we would want to put in the marketplace, and have market acceptance?’ and when all these things intersect that’s ideally when you want to throw the dart.”