Volkswagen is closing in on a new battery technology that will bring “a quantum leap for the electric car”, according to the firm’s boss Martin Winterkorn.
The German manufacturer has been relatively cautious on developing pure EVs - although it has introduced the e-Up, e-Golf and Golf GTE in the past 18 months. Winterkorn told German tabloid newspaper Bild, "VW is researching a super-battery in Silicon Valley in California, that is cheaper, smaller and more powerful. An electric Volkswagen that can travel 300km (186 miles) on electricity is in sight. It will be a quantum leap for the electric car.”
The ranges quoted by Winterkorn are still some way short of those offered by the likes of the Tesla Model S. However, they would be substantial for a more affordable all-electric vehicle - the next generation of e-Golf, for example.
Winterkorn also revealed that VW will launch a three-wheeled semi-scooter called the Last Mile Surfer - in effect a rival to the Segway - that’s designed to be carried in a car and then used for the final phase of the journey.
He said, “It’s a battery-powered scooter with three wheels, similar to the Segway. Our model is much better, though - more elegant and smaller - and with a price under 1000 euros (£710) it is much cheaper. The Last Mile Surfer can be folded and stowed in the boot.”