After 116 years, VW’s Zwickau plant switches from combustion engines to electric

The final combustion engine vehicle has been built at Volkswagen’s Zwickau factory as the facility converts production to electric vehicles.

Today, a seventh-generation Volkswagen Golf R Estate with a 2.0-litre petrol engine became the final combustion-engined vehicle to be built there, ending 116 years of tradition.

Workers staged a photoshoot with the Golf and an ID.3, the first Volkswagen to be built on the firm’s new electric vehicle platform. In the future, Zwickau will build this car and others from VW, as well as EVs from VW Group companies Audi and Seat.

Hall 6, where Golf Estate models have been built until now, will be converted over the summer to produce EVs, with the first models being completed before the end of the year. The annual capacity will ramp up to 330,000 units.

Reinhard de Vries, managing director of technology and logistics at Volkswagen Sachsen, said: “Today is a historic day for us. We are proud of what we have achieved so far, and at the same time are greatly looking forward to what the future holds for us.

“The trend towards electric mobility will continue to pick up speed. We will meet this demand from Zwickau: we have already created the capacity to build 330,000 vehicles next year.”

Jens Rothe, chairman of the General Works Council at Volkswagen Sachsen, added: “Zwickau is steeped in German automotive tradition. Our team has always delivered excellent performance and built vehicles with excellent quality. We have gained the trust in the Group to become the first location to start fully electric large-scale series production. The Zwickau plant is therefore well-equipped for the future.”

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