Volkswagen, the world’s second-largest electrical automobile producer by quantity, has “sold out” of battery-powered fashions within the US and Europe for this 12 months as persistent provide chain bottlenecks hit international manufacturing.
The Wolfsburg-based group, which incorporates manufacturers similar to Porsche, Audi and Škoda, bought greater than 99,000 electrical fashions worldwide within the first three months of 2022 because it was hit by a scarcity of semiconductors and wiring harnesses made in Ukraine.
Market chief Tesla delivered greater than 3 times that quantity in the identical quarter.
Nevertheless, VW boss Herbert Diess mentioned that, since demand had remained sturdy, the corporate had an order backlog in western Europe of 300,000 electrical vehicles. He added that clients now putting orders in Europe and the US wouldn’t get their electrical fashions delivered earlier than 2023.
“We have very high order books and . . . order intake on electric vehicles,” Diess added. “That accounts for all of our models from ID.3, ID.4, the Audi models — [all] are extremely well received in the markets, Škoda models are also very well received in Europe.”
He mentioned: “We are basically sold out on electric vehicles in Europe and in the United States. And in China, it’s really picking up.”
VW is focusing on a complete of roughly 700,000 electrical automobile gross sales for 2022 as an entire because it makes an attempt to meet up with Tesla. Nevertheless, manufacturing has been hampered, notably in VW’s largest market, China, the place it bought simply 28,800 electrical vehicles within the first quarter amid coronavirus lockdowns.
Whereas that gross sales determine is 4 occasions greater than throughout the identical interval final 12 months, it complicates VW’s goal of promoting at the least 140,000 electrical vehicles in China in 2022. The producer missed its electrical gross sales targets within the nation final 12 months.
The auto business’s total gross sales forecasts for the 12 months have been diminished in current weeks, as the worldwide financial system continues to endure from rising uncooked materials costs and the warfare in Ukraine.
Europe’s largest auto provider Bosch mentioned on Wednesday that its earlier estimate of 88mn vehicles being bought in 2022 “probably won’t be met” on account of “adverse effects from the coronavirus pandemic in China and the ongoing chip shortages”.
VW warned that there was “a continued risk” that the warfare and lockdowns in China would “have a negative impact on . . . business activities in the current year”.
Nevertheless, chief monetary officer Arno Antlitz mentioned he remained assured that VW’s electrical enterprise would decide up tempo. “From where we are now, we anticipate a constantly growing battery electric vehicle volume and share in every quarter of 2022.”