It looks like GM is not the only company that has decided that for mainstream electric cars to be a viable business in the future, it has to build its motors on its own. Volkswagen has also announced similiar intentions – its components group will be the system supplier for electric drive technology for the whole group. The aim is so that it can build up a competitive advantage as well as safeguard expertise. Right now, Volkswagen has joint R&D projects with Sanyo, Toshiba and BYD. Volkswagen’s electric powertrains will be built at the group’s Salzgitter plant in Germany, which currently employs over 6,000 workers. The Salzgitter plant currently manufactures engines. Volkswagen’s components arm also intends to be the supplier for an EV version of the Volkswagen up! from 2013. The first Up! will be launched next year, but will be powered by a regular combustion engine.