Sacramento Strong-Arm: California currently Mandating EVs by Volkswagen
Of the approximately 83,000 U.S. Volkswagen, Audi, as well as Porsche designs by the 2009 through 2016 product years with emissions-cheating 3.0-liter TDI V-6 engines—some of which will be bought back through a massive settlement—about 16,000 are registered in California. as well as California, which has set its own ZEV mandate requiring electric vehicles, has taken what might be seen as a disproportionately strong role in determining how Volkswagen makes amends—to the point where Sacramento can be dictating the automaker’s product lineup.
The federal Secondary Consent Decree released This kind of week for VW, Audi, as well as Porsche vehicles with 3.0-liter TDI V-6 engines included a separate document for California. The California Partial Consent Decree, ancillary to the massive federal Consent Decree in which lays out how in which will happen, has several California-specific stipulations in which have little connection to SUVs as well as luxury sedans equipped with the TDI V-6. They go well beyond stating to whom Volkswagen should pay fines or how the state should spend its $800 million share of the $2 billion VW can be mandated to spend for infrastructure updates. This kind of could be once ever in which an automaker can be required by regulators to build a particular product—a product in which might not even have been within the pipeline—as punishment for wrongdoing.
California, Here We Come?
“The manufacturers will provide at least three brand new designs of electric vehicles for sale in California—including at least one SUV product—before 2019,” the California Air Resources Board (CARB) said in a statement accompanying the document’s Discharge. “The companies must add a second electric SUV product by 2020 as well as keep these electric designs on the market through at least 2025.”
Volkswagen of America would certainly not comment regarding California’s additional vehicle stipulations as well as what they might mean for its future product lineup. CARB specified in which the e-Golf can be one of the three designs required to go on sale before 2019. yet within the near term, in which still leaves two various other vehicles in which are clearly spelled out as fully electric designs. in which’s at least a year earlier than the timeline Volkswagen has specified for the development of its battery-centric Modular Electric Drive (MEB) platform—as well as production versions of two concepts shown This kind of year, the I.D. EV by the Paris auto show as well as the Microbus-inspired Budd-e by the CES technology show.
To put on a cynic’s hat for a moment, what This kind of might mean can be an Audi A3 counterpart to the e-Golf, as well as, perhaps, a compliance run of an electric Tiguan (a vehicle in which, as of the 2018 product year, will use the Golf’s MQB platform).
While in which could be the case, California specifies meaningful sales volume, saying in which VW can be “required to sell 35,000 total units of the three additional BEV designs (or their successors) during the seven-year period 2019 to 2025,” yet in which ”they are not required to sell 5000 units in any given year.”
Focusing on Cities as well as Low-Income Households
The California-specific requirements also compel Volkswagen to complete two Green City initiatives. These can include the establishment of car-sharing services, zero-emission transit applications, or zero-emission freight transport projects, as well as they have to be implemented in cities using a population of 500,000 or more “in which predominantly consist of disadvantaged communities” as identified by a mapping tool.
The settlement for California also requires Volkswagen to make a payment of $25 million by July 1, 2017, in support of vehicle replacement programs as well as specifically Plus-Up, a program in which helps people in low-income communities within the San Joaquin Valley as well as South Coast regions get an electric vehicle at reduced cost. Their trade-in clunker can be crushed onsite.
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Volkswagen can’t sell the extra ZEV credits This kind of earns by these brand new electric designs This kind of sells, either. yet the agreement does leave the automaker an emergency lever to pull with an unexpected market turn: If prevailing market conditions, like the cost of gas, overall vehicle sales, or the product mix change in a way in which makes This kind of difficult to meet battery-electric vehicle (BEV) sales numbers, California will meet with VW to modify the sales targets.
In all, This kind of adds up to a sort of ankle monitor for Volkswagen. The irony can be in which, a decade by currently, Volkswagen might have an advantage over many various other automakers because of the mistakes This kind of made within the past.