Volkswagen e-Golf Production Ends To Make Way For ID.3

Production of the Volkswagen e-Golf has recently ended at the Transparent Factory. 

Volkswagen has recently announced that production of its popular e-Golf variant has come to an end, as the Transparent Factory in which it is currently being made will soon be transitioning to the production of the German automaker’s first mainstream battery-electric production car, the VW ID.3. 

The second location to manufacturer the ID.3 after the Zwickau plant where initial cars have already been rolling out since November last year, the Transparent Factory will be closed for three weeks to make the final assembly line adaptations to fit the production of VW’s newest production EV. Having already began the adaptation process earlier in the summer, new ID.3 models will supposedly begin rolling out of this new production line in Dresden by the end of January 2021. 

Once catered to the production of the Volkswagen Phaeton and even the Bentley Flying Spur when it opened in 2001, this particular German VW production facility that earns its name after its predominantly glass facade has transitioned manufacture the e-Golf three years ago. Running in parallel to the Wolfsburg plant, this new production line was needed to meet the high demand of this popular variant of the VW hatchback. 

Launched back in 2014 with Mk7 Golf underpinnings, over 145,561 units of the e-Golf has since rolled off the two German production facilities over the last 7 years, therefore makes this electrified hatchback one of Europe’s most popular EVs. Having said that, this production number looks to be small potatoes, especially when compared to the 28,000 ID.3 models that have already found its way to new owners since European deliveries began only in September this year. 

Based on VW’s proprietary MEB all-electric platform, the ID.3 has not only long been considered to be the German automakers first real entry into the EV realm, but has also been touted to be the group’s spearhead in its future electrification offensive. The ramping up in production of this new electrified hatchback is proof to both these statements. 

VW also has plans afoot to convert its Emden and Hanover sites by 2022 for the production of future MEB-based EVs like the ID.4 E-SUV, or even the rumoured cheaper models in the ID EV range. As for news on the ID.3 in particular, the German automaker confirms that there is to be a basic version offered next year which is to cost from under €30,000 (RM 150,000). 

PRESS RELEASE: The Volkswagen e-Golf is history: Today the last vehicle rolls off the production line at the Transparent Factory in Dresden. With the e-Golf in Uranogrey, a total of 50,401 vehicles have been manufactured in Dresden since March 2017. At the beginning of the new year 2021, the production area of the Transparent Factory will be reconstructed for three weeks before the first ID.3 series vehicles roll off the assembly lines in Dresden at the end of January.

Danny Auerswald, head of plant of the Transparent Factory: “The end of the e-Golf is also the start of the final preparations for the ID.3. In just a few weeks, we will be opening the next chapter for the Transparent Factory. After Zwickau, we are the second location in Europe to manufacture vehicles based on the new modular e-drive system. Volkswagen is thus underlining the importance of the Saxon plants in the group-wide E-offensive.”

Thomas Aehlig, Chairman of the Works Council of the Transparent Factory: “The start of assembly of the ID.3 is very good news for the workforce and the reward for the many efforts made in the transformation of the site since 2016. We have thus achieved sustainable job security for the core workforce and a positive future perspective for the site.”

Dresden site: Technical equipment for the ID.3 in two waves

At the beginning of 2021, the production area of the Transparent Factory will be converted to meet the requirements of the Modular Electric Drive Kit (MEB). The first conversions for the ID.3 already took place in summer 2020. As one of seven stations, the “marriage”, where the body and chassis are bolted together, was adapted. The conversion measures in winter include, for example, the installation of a system on which the panoramic roof is fitted and the adaptation of the gripping devices for the installation of the cockpit and seat system.

e-Golf: One of the most popular e-vehicles in Europe

The e-Golf was launched in 2014 and was produced in Wolfsburg until summer 2020. In 2017, the Transparent Factory started production in parallel to meet the high demand. In total, 145,561 left the two German production facilities in more than seven years. Measured by sales figures, the e-Golf is one of the most popular e-cars in Europe – especially with customers in Norway and the German home market.

Transparent Factory Dresden: E-location and showcase for e-mobility since 2017

Since opening in 2001, the upper-class saloon Phaeton (84,235 units, 2001-2016), the Bentley Flying Spur (2,186 units, 2005/2006 and 2013/2014) and, since 2017, the e-Golf (50,401 units) have rolled off the production line in the Transparent Factory.

The launch of the e-Golf also marked the strategic realignment of the company into a “Centre of Future Mobility”. Innovative business areas such as the “Future Mobility Incubator”, Volkswagen’s start-up programme, and the “Future Mobility Campus”, a learning laboratory for training and further education, the expansion of vehicle delivery and as a test field for Production 4.0, have made the location fit for the future. This successful transformation will continue apace with the imminent series production of the ID.3 from the end of January 2021.

MEB makes electric cars suitable for the masses

The ID.3 is the first vehicle to be based on Volkswagen’s Modular Electric Drive Kit (MEB). The platform was developed specifically for e-cars and makes the best possible use of the possibilities of electric mobility. For example, the ID.3 has a long range, plenty of interior space and dynamic handling. More than 28,000 cars have been handed over to customers since the Europe-wide market launch in September. The basic version of the ID.3 will cost less than 30,000 euros (without state subsidies) and will be available to order in early 2021.

Strong e-car cluster at the location Germany

With its determined entry into e-mobility, Volkswagen is making an important contribution to climate protection and thus creating long-term prospects for its approximately 100,000 employees at its German plants. In addition to production at the Zwickau plant and, in future, Dresden, the component plants in Brunswick, Kassel, Salzgitter and Wolfsburg are also involved. They manufacture important components such as the electric motor or the battery system. The Emden and Hanover vehicle plants are also scheduled to start producing e-cars from 2022. In the medium term, the Group headquarters in Wolfsburg is to become the pioneering factory for the highly automated manufacture of electric vehicles.

Joshua Chin

Automotive journalist. Professional work on and Personal writing found at Instagram: @driveeveryday

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