March 13, 2018 / 9:33 AM / a year ago

VW assigns 20 bln euros in battery orders, speeds EV push

BERLIN, March 13 (Reuters) - Volkswagen said it has selected partners to provide battery cells and related technology worth around 20 billion euros ($24.7 billion) for electric-vehicle (EV) projects in Europe and China, pushing ahead with a shift to zero-emission cars.

Europe’s largest automaker will expand production of electric cars to 16 factories worldwide through the end of 2022, it said on Tuesday.

Volkswagen (VW) last year started looking for partners in China, Europe and North America to provide battery technology worth more than 50 billion euros.

A decision on a supplier for North America will be taken soon, it said.

VW has said it plans to launch 80 new electric cars across the group by 2025 and offer an electric version of each of its 300 group models by 2030.

Separately, the German carmaker reiterated guidance for higher vehicle sales and revenue this year as well as a group return on sales of 6.5 to 7.5 percent before special items, compared with 7.4 percent last year.

Operating profit at luxury division Audi climbed to 5.06 billion euros last year, from 4.85 billion in 2016, VW said. Underlying earnings at Porsche rose to 4.00 billion euros from 3.73 billion. ($1 = 0.8114 euros) (Reporting by Andreas Cremer)

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