The car manufacturer hopes that the corona crisis should promote e-mobility. There is obviously great interest in the new ID.3, especially in markets such as Norway and Holland.
Volkswagen does not assume that the corona pandemic will slow down the market launch of the first all-electric model from the VW brand, the ID.3, in September. “Corona is likely to accelerate the turn to electromobility,” said the sales and marketing manager for electromobility at VW, Silke Bagschik, of the FAZ on Thursday. The pandemic would have increased awareness of environmental protection and the future of society.
“Our electric cars are currently sold out quickly,” said Bagschik. There is almost a year of waiting for the VW e-up. “It is less a demand than a supply problem,” she said: “We will expand capacities as far as possible and build what can be built.” The VW manager is therefore looking forward to Monday.
Then customers will be able to order the ID.3 in stores for the first time in several European countries. “There is great interest, especially in markets such as Norway or Holland, where electromobility is already more widespread,” said Bagschik. These markets are “incredibly hungry” for the electric car, especially since there have long been ideal funding conditions for the purchase of an electric car.
“The plan is there, the demand is there”
“It wasn’t easy in Germany at first,” said Bagschik. In the meantime, however, a lot has happened: “The interest in electromobility is growing noticeably.” However, many people are still afraid of charging, unlike in countries like Denmark or Holland, where it is precisely indicated where charging stations are.
Although the ID.3 will only be seen in a few car dealerships after the start of orders on Monday, it is already noticeable there that the topic of electromobility is perceived differently emotionally. From September onwards, VW wants to first deliver the ID.3 to customers who have pre-ordered it. This was 36,000, only 10 to 20 percent jumped off. However, the number is easily topped up by interested parties who have signed up on waiting lists.
Despite the production stop of several weeks due to the corona pandemic, the company expects to build almost the planned 100,000 ID, especially the ID.3, which is priced at the same level as the VW Golf, but also the ID.4 from September onwards – the first fully electric SUV from Volkswagen. “The plan is there, the demand is there,” said Bagschik. VW is also confident because of the generous funding – the maximum funding rate for electric vehicles is 9,480 euros.
Problems with digital functions
“The cars will then all have the latest software version, which we will have by then,” said the VW manager. The software difficulties are partly due to the pandemic because the international Volkswagen teams could not have worked. Two digital functions that were not finished on time should then be able to be installed by the first customers free of charge from the first quarter of 2021.
This involves “App-Connect”, a reflection of the smartphone user interface in the car’s software system, as well as an extension of the navigation displays in the driver’s field of vision, the so-called head-up display. “That’s the nice thing about the software,” said Bagschik: “We can improve right up to the last minute.” Everyone knows that with smartphones: “Updates will also be part of the normal for the car of the future.”