As part of the company’s continuing response to its infamous diesel emissions scandal, Volkswagen will reportedly be transitioning to the use of flat battery packs for its long-range electric vehicles — following (slowly) in the footsteps of companies such as Tesla, Nissan, and BMW.
The company will reportedly be developing a new “dedicated” vehicle architecture that “foresees the installation of flat batteries.”
The chairman of the Volkswagen passenger-car brand, Dr Herbert Diess, commented that the move was “a breakthrough” for the company, according to the most recent issue of the VW employee newsletter Insight.
Green Car Reports provides more:
Diess will unveil a new electric Volkswagen Microbus concept in early January at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.
…The current first generation of battery electric vehicles adapted from gasoline cars, including the Volkswagen e-Golf, usually retrofits battery packs under the rear seat and cargo bay. As well as the e-Golf, additional vehicles in that category include the Chevrolet Spark EV, Fiat 500e, Ford Focus Electric, Kia Soul EV, and Mercedes-Benz B-Class Electric Drive.
But a dedicated flat-battery design is likely a requirement in order to accommodate the much larger packs that will boost range from those cars’ 80 miles or so to match the 200 miles of next year’s 2017 Chevrolet Bolt EV.
While this does sound like good news, the cynical side of me notes that this announcements seem to be intended simply to counteract the bad PR resulting from the diesel emissions cheating scandal.