Volkswagen Group is in a position to overtake Tesla in both electric vehicle production figures and software development, the automaker’s labor chief, Bernd Osterloh, said in an interview with a German news outlet.
“If Tesla sets up three factories where 300,000 to 500,000 cars can be produced, then we are talking about a number of units between 900,000 and 1.5 million. We want to achieve the same in 2023, probably even earlier,” Osterloh, who is head of the automaker’s works council, told the Welt am Sonntag newspaper on Sunday.
VW’s modular electric-drive matrix platform, or MEB, gives the automaker a “huge” advantage,” as it can build any vehicle of any brand on it, Osterloh said.
Osterloh also said he expected an engineering task force called Artemis, set up under Audi CEO Markus Duesmann, to help the group catch up with Tesla’s technological edge. The new Car Software Organization, where all of VW’s software operations are bundled, is a step in this direction, Osterloh told the newspaper.
“Their advantage is that they already have their software in the cars and use it to collect data,” he said of Tesla. “But if we get our system into our cars, we will have much more data within a short time.”
VW said in 2018 that it would spend 44 billion euros ($52 billion) through 2023 as part of a push for now more than 50 full-electric models by 2025.