Volkswagen is in talks with JSW about an Indian electric car joint venture

The Indian steel group JSW is reportedly negotiating with the Volkswagen Group to establish a joint venture for the production of electric cars in India. Volkswagen is also said to be considering the sale of its Indian subsidiary Skoda Auto Volkswagen India.

Image: JSW

The news was initially reported Moneycontrol, citing people directly informed about the talks. According to the portal, the negotiations, which are said to have started at the beginning of this month, could soon achieve exclusivity status. In other words, both companies would then no longer conduct negotiations with other potential partners. The report is not more specific at this point, but also mentions, with reference to insiders, that Volkswagen is to examine the sale of its shares in Skoda Auto Volkswagen India in parallel. This is because the German manufacturer is interested in cooperating with another car manufacturer in India in the production of electric cars.

Until now, Skoda Auto has been responsible for the Indian market within the Volkswagen Group. Moneycontrol quotes a spokesperson of the manufacturer as saying that the news remains speculative and will not be officially commented until a later stage. However, earlier this month, the India unit head had announced that the VW Group was planning to launch a low-cost electric SUV in India in the second half of this decade, which could also be exported to other countries. Piyush Arora, CEO of Skoda Auto Volkswagen India, told Reuters. “We are actively working on an entry-level electric vehicle. We are looking at which VW Group platform is best suited to build a compact electric SUV in India,” he said verbatim.

VW is currently working on a simplified version of the MEB in order to build €25,000 models such as the upcoming ID.2 in Europe. VW is already rumoured to be cooperating with Renault on a possible €20,000 model. VW is also working with partners in China on cheaper e-platforms. According to reports from the summer, the planned supply of MEB components to the Indian car manufacturer Mahindra is experiencing delays, but the supply deal has been finalised a few days ago.

For its part, Indian steel group JSW announced this month that it will invest 400 billion rupees (equivalent to around 4.47 billion euros) in the construction of a battery and electric vehicle production facility in the Indian state of Odisha. In December, JSW also agreed to jointly develop electric vehicles with MG Motor India, the Indian subsidiary of Chinese manufacturer SAIC Motor.


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