Volkswagen MEB electric platform unveiled – compact ID. in 2020, to feature 125 kW, one-hour fast charging

Volkswagen MEB electric platform unveiled – compact ID. in 2020, to feature 125 kW, one-hour fast charging

Volkswagen has unveiled its Electric for All initiative, which will set out to introduce electric vehicles over the better part of the next decade at what the automaker says will be affordable prices. The brand is aiming to sell around 150,000 electric cars by 2020 and increase annual sales to a million units by 2025. This will be part of the ambitious plan to deploy more than 10 million vehicles from across the VW Group during that timeframe.

At the heart of it will be the Modularer Elektrifizierungsbaukasten (MEB), or modular electric drive matrix, a platform developed specifically for electric vehicles. The MEB will form the basis of not just the automaker’s new ID. family of EVs but also for four other brands across the group’s portfolio, namely Audi, Seat, Skoda and Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles.

The dedicated platform will offer great flexibility in application, covering vehicles ranging from compact class vehicles to SUVs and sedans as well as vans. The range of MEB models will be similar in size to that of current vehicles based on the Modularer Querbaukasten (MQB) – or modular transverse matrix – platform, with the top-of-the-range MEB-based offerings being large B-segment models with up to seven seats.

The first offering from the VW stable will be the compact ID. that’s based on the I.D. concept, and this will begin production next year and make its market debut in 2020. This will be followed by a zero-emission SUV based on the I.D. Crozz concept, also in 2020.

Next in line will be an electric MPV along the lines of the I.D. Buzz microbus study that was shown in Detroit last year, with series production set for 2022. Then comes a sedan based on the I.D. Vizzion, and this is also set to be launched also in 2022.

The company hasn’t divulged much about the technical aspects of the propulsion system, save to say that it will feature a 125 kW charging rate capability, which will considerably speed up the time needed to juice up – the battery can be charged to 80% in about 30 minutes and to full capacity in an hour, bringing charging time down to a quarter that needed by a 22 kW DC system, or an eighth of that by a 11 kW AC system.

The battery – developed by Volkswagen Group Components – can be used to drive one or both axles, and its cell module set-up is arranged in a similar way to a bar of chocolate, making it easy to install. Design elements include an aluminium housing for weight optimisation and an integrated cooling system. Along with the MEB, the automaker also previewed a design prototype of its Volks-Wallbox, an affordable home charging system.

The ID. models will be able to travel distances of more than 550 km (based on WLTP), but scalable battery tech means that models will be able to be configured with various different battery capacities, depending on need and requirements. For instance, an ID. owner utilising a vehicle for short commutes in and around the city might need only a battery with a smaller energy content, and the option would bring the entry cost of the vehicle down.

Volkswagen will build the ID. series production models in Zwickau and Dresden, with production of the battery system being done at its Braunschweig plant, which already builds the batteries for the e-up!2, the e-Golf and the Passat GTE3 plug-in hybrid. In the future, it will be able to build up to half a million battery systems per annually. The rotors/stators, meanwhile, will be made in Salzgitter, while the drive electric motor will be assembled at its Kassel plant.

GALLERY: Volkswagen I.D. concept

GALLERY: Volkswagen I.D. Crozz concept

GALLERY: Volkswagen I.D. Buzz concept

GALLERY: Volkswagen I.D. Vizzion concept

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Anthony Lim

Anthony Lim believes that nothing is better than a good smoke and a car with character, with good handling aspects being top of the prize heap. Having spent more than a decade and a half with an English tabloid daily never being able to grasp the meaning of brevity or being succinct, he wags his tail furiously at the idea of waffling - in greater detail - about cars and all their intrinsic peculiarities here.



  • Edwin L on Sep 20, 2018 at 12:53 pm

    Electric? But isn’t the picture shows an internal combustion engine?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1
    • Levi E on Sep 20, 2018 at 9:37 pm

      yup the front trunk is too packed and messy for an electric vehicle!

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0
    • kebal on Sep 22, 2018 at 11:35 am

      Yes it’s electric. No the picture is not ICE. Take a closer look, there’s no engine in there.

      The ‘engine bay’ now contains all the power electronics, similar to Merc’s EQC and Audi’s E-Tron.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0
  • Even a Volkswagen can charge faster than an iPhone

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

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