The Volkswagen Group is keen to show the world that it is committed to promoting clean, electrified powertrain vehicles not just in developed markets in Europe and the US, but also in developing markets like China, which is also the group's largest car market.
Speaking at the Volkswagen Group Night on the eve of the 2014 Beijing International Auto Show late yesterday, group CEO Prof. Dr. Martin Winterkorn revealed that the Volkswagen Group will be launching at least five new plug-in hybrid models in China within the next few years.
The models are - Audi A3 e-tron, Volkswagen Golf GTE, Audi A6 plug-in hybrid and an unnamed mid-size Volkswagen limousine. At the other end of the scale, Bentley will also be launching a plug-in hybrid SUV soon.
Winterkorn also added that the Porsche Panamera S E-hybrid is already on sale in China.
The Volkswagen Group is once again assuming a pioneering role in China and launching the biggest initiative for e-mobility in China's automotive history," said Winterkorn.
"All these vehicles are highly efficient and eco-friendly. And at the same time they offer lots of driving pleasure. That is exactly what people all over the world and here in China expect of the Volkswagen Group. Thanks to the modular strategy, which is also being implemented at our Chinese factories, we can electrify nearly every model in our range: From small cars to large sedans, from pure electric drives to plug-in hybrids."
He also explained that within the Volkswagen Group, there are 17 models that already meets Chinese regulations for 'especially energy-efficient vehicles.'
Local production of plug-in hybrids in China
The Audi A6 plug-in hybrid will be produced by the FAW-Volkswagen joint venture while the unnamed Volkswagen mid-size limousine will be produced by its other joint-venture Shanghai Volkswagen (with SAIC).
Both models are developed exclusively for China and will not be sold elsewhere, meaning that it will be based on the Chinese market only models like the long wheelbase Audi A6L.
The two joint ventures will be investing 18.2 billion Euros up to 2018.