VW Trinity electric car factory gets go-ahead in Wolfsburg
09 March 2022
Volkswagen (VW) Group will set up a new car manufacturing facility for its electric Trinity model in the Warmenau district of Wolfsburg, Germany. Investment is set to reach roughly €2 billion, highlighting the importance of the site to the car manufacturer.
Site construction is scheduled for 2023, with the carmaker aiming for high environmental standards. The car factory is a key element in the largest modernisation programme in the history of the OEM’s main location.
Approval was passed via a resolution from the group’s supervisory board. The facility will become a model for the transformation of car production at the main Wolfsburg plant. As time ticks on, this development will also extend to other VW sites too.
Three years later, production of the net-carbon neutral Trinity vehicle will get underway in the Warmenau location. VW wants the upcoming vehicle to set new standards in autonomous driving, electrification, and digitalisation. The car will become a crystallisation point for the German firm’s Accelerate strategy.
Trinity will tick many automotive developmental, technological, and sustainable boxes for VW. The battery-electric vehicle (BEV) Scalable Systems Platform (SSP) will debut in the volume version of the model. This supports much shorter charging times and an expected range of over 700km. The car will be technically ready for autonomous driving at SAE Level 4. As a net-carbon neutral car, it will also boast serious green credentials.
Manufacturing of this landmark vehicle also looks to be remarkable, with VW targeting a production time of 10 hours per vehicle. The key to this is fewer components, fewer variants, leaner factory lines, more automation, and new logistic concepts. There are plans to integrate the SSP platform modelled on the Trinity facility at the existing car plant by 2030.
‘We are setting benchmarks in the automotive industry with Trinity and the new factory and turning Wolfsburg into the global lighthouse for cutting-edge and efficient vehicle production. This reaffirms that the economic transformation of Germany as a centre of industry can be achieved,’ said VW CEO Ralf Brandstätter.
Efficiency and impact
In December last year, VW’s supervisory board said production of the Trinity would take place at the main Wolfsburg location. However, this legacy site is transforming much earlier to accommodate the production of EVs. Wolfsburg will begin production of the ID.3 in 2023 to meet high demand for the model.
This left the carmaker carrying out extensive analysis of several options, including the chosen greenfield site. Constructing a new car plant in the Warmenau district means manufacturing will not be disrupted elsewhere, including the ramp-up of models like the Tiguan or Tayron.
‘The decision by Volkswagen to build a state-of-the-art manufacturing facility for environmentally-friendly, digitised electric vehicles in Wolfsburg-Warmenau is a clear commitment to Lower Saxony as a centre of industry,’ said Lower Saxony’s minister-president, Stephan Weil. ‘Trinity is now being added to the list of enormously successful VW vehicles, from the Beetle through to the Golf. Step-by-step, production capacity throughout Lower Saxony is to become carbon-neutral. Environmental protection is a top priority in automobile production, as elsewhere.’