SAIC Volkswagen – a joint venture between the Chinese and German car makers – has celebrated the start of pre-production of VW’s first all-electric ID model for the Chinese market at its newly opened manufacturing facility in Anting, Shanghai.
The new plant has been built specifically for the production of pure EVs built on Volkswagen’s Modular Electric Drive Matrix (MEB) platform architecture.
The start of series production of all-electric cars based on the MEB platform in Anting is scheduled for October 2020, with an annual capacity of 300,000 vehicles.
Stephan Wöllenstein, CEO of Volkswagen Group China, said: “It took only 12 months to see the completion of this innovative factory. Congratulations to our colleagues in Anting, who will further prepare to produce the first China-model of the Volkswagen ID family here in Shanghai. We will speed up our [new energy vehicles] offensive even more, as we expect further e-mobility market growth.”
The Anting plant is scheduled to start ID model production at the same time as a FAW-Volkswagen plant in Foshan, resulting in a combined capacity of 600,000 units per year.
In future, the Anting plant will also manufacture MEB platform-based battery-electric vehicle models for various Volkswagen Group brands. In total, it is planned to increase the local production in China up to 15 MEB models from different brands by 2025.
According to VW, the Anting plant “sets a new benchmark for green and smart factories for Volkswagen Group China and the whole Chinese auto industry”. Area utilisation is reportedly highly increased, meaning less land and built-up space is said to be needed compared to a standard plant. In terms of flexibility, the new MEB allows for six different car projects running simultaneously – a first for a Chinese production facility.