Volkswagen plans to reduce its electric vehicle (EV) production by 30% at the Emden plant in northern Germany.
Local newspaper Nordwest-Zeitung reported that the Emden Plant’s works council stated production of Volkswagen’s all-electric ID.4 SUV and ID.7 sedan would be reduced over the next two weeks. Manfred Wulff, the works council’s head at the Emden Plant, noted that EV demand in Emden is 30% below VW’s original production figures.
VW also plans to extend the summer vacation of the plant workers. Emden Plant employees will enjoy an extra week of summer vacation for a total of 4 weeks instead of the planned 3-week break.
Volkswagen officially started production of the ID.4 SUV at the Emden Plant in May 2022. The facility in Emden marked VW’s electric vehicle production expansion plans. The German automaker plans to launch EV production in two other facilities. One of the new EV production plants will be located in Chattanooga, Tennessee, and the other will be in Hanover, Germany.
However, the German automaker remains optimistic about EV production in the future.
“We are confident that capacity utilization at the plant will increase again with the market launch of the ID.7 at the end of the year,” said a VW spokesperson.
Electric vehicle sales started declining in Germany at the beginning of the year after the government decided to cut subsidies for EV purchases. The German government believed that the popularity of EVs made subsidies unnecessary. Germany’s fully-electric vehicle sales from February 2023 revealed that the EV slate dropped by 13.2% compared to January 2022.
The EV sales trend in the rest of Europe is quite different. EU EV sales jumped 71% thanks to subsidies, starkly contrasting Germany’s local electric vehicle market. The European Automobile Manufacturers Association (ACEA) shared that fossil-fuel vehicles still make up most of new car sales and registrations but are steadily declining. In 2015, diesel cars accounted for more than 50% of all European car sales. In May 2023, diesel and other petrol vehicles only account for 36.5% of the car market. Electric vehicles accounted for 13.8% of all car sales last month.