Shortly after the Dieselgate scandal broke, Volkswagen announced that it would focus less attention on diesels and more on electric vehicles--you know, like most automakers on the planet. Though we've occasionally questioned the automaker's commitment to its bold EV plan, Volkswagen appears to be in it to win it.
As proof, there's this report that Volkswagen's mass-market brand is working on a new electric car that will have a driving range of up to 600 km (372 miles). The vehicle will be unveiled next month at the Paris Auto Show.
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It's unclear how final the car's design will be when the cloth comes off, but VW's CEO, Hebert Diess, says that models could begin rolling off the assembly line in 2017, in time for the 2018 model year. If that's the case, what we see in Paris will need to be fairly production-ready.
Diess describes the car as roughly the size of the VW Golf, but with significantly more cargo space, on par with the VW Passat. It's the first of 30+ electric vehicles that Volkswagen plans to drive into showrooms over the next nine years.
Obviously, it remains to be seen whether this new car will actually meet its projected 600 km range when held to U.S. Environmental Protection Agency standards. As you might recall, Volkswagen has effectively blamed EPA regulations for the Dieselgate debacle, saying that the EPA's benchmarks were so high, engineers had no choice but to find ways to cheat on emissions tests.