Volkswagen, the German car manufacturer, is marking out spots for a future electric vehicle factory that will be located in North America. This comes as major car companies gear up to face the impact of Tesla, a rival firm, on the market.
The newly-appointed chief executive of the US arm of Volkswagen said that the company is planning a new plant that will house the operations for building a car that has yet to be revealed. The car is scheduled to be released in 2020 at a price point that may be up to $40,000 (£31,332).
At the Los Angeles auto show that was held last night, Scott Keogh informed journalists: “We are 100 per cent deep in the process of ‘We will need an electric car plant in North America’, and we’re holding those conversations now.”
Earlier this month, Volkswagen said that it was planning to spend nearly €44 billion (£39.2 billion) on developing autonomous vehicles, new mobility services, and electric cars by 2023, while also exploring possible partnerships with Ford, a US manufacturer.
Keogh said that existing plant of the firm that is located in Tennessee could have the capacity to build its electric cars, however, he said that it will not necessarily be chosen.
The news was released just days after General Motors, its rival manufacturer, laid off approximately 8,000 of its workers and shut down five plants in the United States, as it hopes to reduce its costs while doubling down on resources for autonomous and electric vehicles.
The growing influence of Tesla in the market of electric vehicles has pushed fast forward on the plans of many major carmakers. This comes as the young firm makes the headlines weekly because of the eccentric behaviour of Elon Musk, its founder and chief executive.
Earlier this year, Tesla announced that it would be building another so-called gigafactory that will be located in Shanghai in order to keep up with the demand for its cars in China, where the tariffs on imports have dramatically affected the sales.