The Volkswagen Zwickau-Mosel car factory has just produced the final model with a combustion engine, that being a Volkswagen Mk7.5 Golf R Estate in Oryx White Pearl. Moving forward, the plant will exclusively be producing electric vehicles, and it’s poised to be the largest EV factory in Europe.
According to Volkswagen, conversion work (which costs around RM5.8 billion) is well underway, and the first batch of EVs (read: the ID.3) will roll off the assembly line by the end of the year. As the plant expands, it will be producing six MEB-based models, including the ID.4 and an electric SUV from Audi.
The plant’s annual output is expected to be around 330,000 units, which is more than any other plant within the Volkswagen Group. Production will be supplemented by a team of 8,000 employees, most of which are currently being trained to handle high-voltage systems. However, Volkswagen did say that the bodies for the Lamborghini and Bentley luxury SUVs will continue to be produced in Zwickau.
Here’s a little backstory – the Zwickau plant has been used to produce cars and motorcycles since 1904, particularly for Audi, Horch and DWK up until the 1940s. It also became the production base for the now-defunct Trabant brand, which produced close to 3.1 million cars between 1957 to 1991.
Volkswagen only officially entered the picture in 1990, and have since built exactly 6,049,207 Volkswagen cars. The models include the Polo, Golf, Golf Estate, Passat Sedan and Passat Estate. Since 1904 to 2020, the Zwickau plant has produced over 9.5 million combustion-engined cars, but that ends today.