June 22, 2024


Automotive pure lust

Volkswagen plans new SUV on upgraded electric-car architecture

Volkswagen plans new SUV on upgraded electric-car architecture

An electric equivalent to the Volkswagen T-Roc SUV is due by 2026, as Volkswagen prepares to manufacture only electric vehicles in all its European factories by 2033.

German car giant Volkswagen has announced plans to introduce a new electric SUV by 2026 on an upgraded version of its dedicated battery-powered platform – said to be capable of up to 700km of driving range on a single charge.

The mystery model is tipped to be one of 10 new or updated Volkswagen electric vehicles planned for launch by 2026, and will be built at the car maker’s home base in Wolfsburg, Germany.

By the end of 2033, Volkswagen plans to only build electric cars at its factories in Europe – which, unless petrol Volkswagens remain in production overseas, may force the hand of Volkswagen Australia, as all but one VW model sold locally originate from Europe.

Volkswagen says the new model will be a “compact SUV” – suggesting it may be the planned SUV spin-off of the VW ID.3 electric hatchback, production of which will expand to the Wolfsburg factory next year (from two other German factories) to coincide with its mid-life update.

Automotive News Europe reported the new Volkswagen electric SUV could be similar in size to a Tiguan.

The new model is slated to make use of an upgraded version of Volkswagen’s dedicated MEB platform for electric cars, known as MEB+.

Volkswagen says the updated architecture is due to enable driving ranges of up to 700km from next-generation battery cells (up from 550km in today’s ID.3), charging power of up to 200kW (vs a 170kW peak today), and improved “automated driving functions”.

It’s unclear if the new compact SUV would be able to achieve this driving range claim, or if it would be reserved for more aerodynamic models.

Following the new SUV going to production in Wolfsburg is Project Trinity, a sleek flagship electric sedan earmarked for launch in 2028 on a new architecture.

However, it’s yet to be determined if the limousine will be built in the same factory as the ID.3 and new SUV, or a new facility nearby.

“That is the largest vehicle segment worldwide, it is home to our popular Tiguan. The new model would ideally complement our bestselling ID.4 and ID.5. This is how we intend to expand our market position further and give our customers the high-quality vehicles they expect from us,” Volkswagen passenger cars CEO Thomas Schäfer said in a media statement.

Other new Volkswagen electric cars expected to launch by 2026 – aside from the updated ID.3 and new small SUV – include the ID. Aero sedan and wagon next year, ID.1 and ID.2 electric city cars, and likely facelifts for the ID.4 and ID.5 models.

Alex Misoyannis

Alex Misoyannis has been writing about cars since 2017, when he started his own website, Redline. He contributed for Drive in 2018, before joining CarAdvice in 2019, becoming a regular contributing journalist within the news team in 2020.

Cars have played a central role throughout Alex’s life, from flicking through car magazines at a young age, to growing up around performance vehicles in a car-loving family.

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