VW may open its electric car platform to competitors

It's even in late-stage talks with some partners.

Volkswagen's bid to widen the reach of its electric car platform might extend well beyond Ford trucks and vans. Company strategy head Michael Jost told Der Tagesspiegel in an interview that the company wanted to make its MEB platform a standard outside of VW Group cars. It was already in "advanced discussions" with some competitors, he added. While he didn't name those brands, Ford is already exploring further team-ups.

Jost described the strategy as a "paradigm shift" for VW. It makes sense given the company's overall focus, though. It knows car ownership could decline as ridesharing and self-driving vehicles take off, and it has been developing mobility services that could be crucial to its future. It might not mind sharing its technology if it becomes the foundation for car hailing services around the world, especially if it's taking a cut of every car that rolls off the line.

The exec also confirmed that there will be an EV model in 2023 or 2024 that will cost less than the production I.D. vehicle. It would cost less than €20,000 (about $23,000) and would be roughly the size of VW's compact T-Roc crossover. The firm wants to make its electric cars accessible, and that means hitting price points that people are used to for conventional vehicles.