Volkswagen’s Zwickau factory has a lot of history behind it. Located in what used to be East Germany, it produced the famous (or infamous) Trabant saloon that was an icon of the former socialist state. After the country’s reunification, it was taken over by VW and manufactured a wide range of models from the Golf all the way to the Phaeton.
But the massive shift to electric vehicles by the German automaker means that certain changes must be made to achieve its goals. And the Zwickau plant becomes part of that change as 2022 marks its first year of operation as an exclusive production line for EVs.
The products coming out of the Zwickau facility are all based on the Volkswagen Group’s highly adaptable Modularer Elektrobaukasten platform for EVs. The Volkswagen ID.3, ID.4 and ID.5, the Audi Q4 e-Tron and Q4 Sportback e-Tron, and the Cupra Born will all come from this factory, which has a theoretical annual capacity of over 300,000 vehicles.
The conversion to an all-EV plant began in 2018. A €1.2 billion (P70.14 billion) investment saw the implementation of a highly automated production process using 1,625 robots. In addition, the refreshed Zwickau plant now runs on green electricity, and any unavoidable emissions are offset through the vehicles and various environmental initiatives.