German automaker Volkswagen revealed in an interview over the weekend that it plans to have entirely stopped producing combustion engine vehicles between 2033 and 2035. This adds to the already impressive wave of car manufacturers committing to becoming more environmentally friendly. Captain Planet would be so proud.
Combustion is combust-out for VW
VW’s sales board director explained the manufacturer’s plans moving forward with regards to phasing out combustion engines. “In Europe, we will exit the combustion engine vehicle business between 2033 and 2035, in the USA and China a little later. In South America and Africa, due to the lack of political and infrastructural framework conditions, it will take a good bit longer,” he said. He added that the car manufacturer wants to be entirely carbon-neutral by 2050 at the latest, which is certainly an admirable ambition.
The USA and Europe appear to be pretty on top of things when it comes to cracking down on car-based emissions. The UK government recently heard Tesla out on a proposed tax hike on diesel and petrol vehicles, and has been putting pressure on automakers to scale up their environmentally friendly offerings too. Hence why VW will be starting its transformation in Europe, where the political and economic scaffolding can support it.
VW obviously isn’t going to just start tossing combustion engines out of windows. Zellmer said that while VW updates and upgrades its combustion alternatives, combustion engines would have to be kept around. But just for a little longer.
Like many other companies, VW’s clearly keen to up its eco-friendly game, and it’s already made some significant progress to that end. For example, aside from its current electric offerings, the automaker developed a method to recycle up to 95% of the materials used to create its EV batteries to cope with the ongoing semiconductor shortage. But be warned. It’s a little gruesome.