Volkswagen invests over Ksh.11.3 billion in electric cars as sale surpasses Tesla’s in Europe
Europe’s largest carmaker Volkswagen is falling further behind Tesla in the race to dominate the market for electric cars.
Volkswagen delivered 452,900 battery-electric cars to customers in 2021, nearly double its total from the previous year. But that wasn’t enough to keep pace with Tesla, which delivered over 936,000 vehicles in 2021.
The German company has committed to spending more than Ksh.11.3 billion over the next five years to electrify its fleet and mount a challenge to Tesla. Volkswagen is already the top seller of electric cars in Europe, and it expects 25 percent of the vehicles it sells globally to be electric by 2026.
In total, Tesla boosted its deliveries last year by roughly 436,600 compared to an increase of 220,900 for the Volkswagen Group, which owns brands including Audi, Porsche and Skoda.
It has begun rolling out a series of new models, including the ID.4 electric SUV, but progress last year was hampered by supply chain issues, Volkswagen Group said.
“2021 was very challenging due to global semiconductor shortages, but we nevertheless consistently implemented our clear future course. The doubling of our battery-electric volumes and the high demand for all our vehicles clearly show that we are on the right track, ” said sales boss Christian Dahlheim
Tesla had its own chip shortage issues during the year but was able to manage them. Elon Musk’s company posted record deliveries in the final three months of 2021 of 308,600 vehicles, easily surpassing Wall Street estimates.
Tesla has forecast that with new factories near Austin, Texas, and Berlin starting full-scale production in 2022, it should have annual global sales growth of 50% or better for at least the next few years.