FRANKFURT – Volkswagen Group has signed German startup e.GO Mobile as the first external partner for its MEB modular platform for electric vehicles.
The fast-expanding Aachen-based company will use VW Group's MEB architecture to "bring e-vehicles to market that complement Volkswagen's model offering," the automaker said in a statement.
The partners did not say what type of vehicle they plan to develop.
VW brand strategy chief Michael Jost said in a newspaper interview in January that the group was in advanced talks with competitors over making the MEB platform available to others. The aim at VW Group is to achieve a significant reduction in the cost of e-mobility through the widest possible deployment of MEB.
Separately, VW Group said in January that it was exploring joint development of EVs with Ford as part of a wide-ranging partnership.
VW Group plans to invest 30 billion euros ($34 billion) in e-mobility until 2023, it said in a statement on the eve of the Geneva auto show.
The company's EV investment budget outstrips that of its closest competitors, in pursuit of profitable mass-production of electric vehicles, something that no automaker has come close to achieving.
E.GO Mobile helped develop the StreetScooter delivery van that is being produced by a subsidiary of postal services group Deutsche Post.
Among e.GO's other projects, it aims to bring an electric shuttle to market in a joint venture with German supplier ZF Friedrichshafen.