VW eyes green road ahead with 'Voltswagen' name change

·2-min read

Volkswagen's American unit is to be renamed "Voltswagen" as the German carmaker moves towards an all-electric future in the US following the damaging dieselgate scandal.

It confirmed on Tuesday that the US business was to be called "Voltswagen of America" from May.

The news was divulged 24 hours after an apparent blunder that saw a draft of the statement mistakenly published on its website.

VW was the first of the major carmakers to reveal an all-electric future for its group brands, which also include Skoda, Seat and Audi, in 2016 amid the fallout from the so-called dieselgate scandal.

The company's admission that it had fitted software in 11 million diesel-powered vehicles globally that was designed to cheat emission testing cost it more than $30bn in fines, settlements and compensation in America alone.

It has since committed to sell one million electric vehicles worldwide by 2025 and plans to launch 70 electric models across the VW group brands by 2029, as governments globally move to cut pollution in the battle against climate change.

Ford announced last month that its entire passenger range in Europe would be all-electric by the end of the decade.

Jaguar Land Rover has made a similar commitment.

VW said it was pursuing a goal to ensure that all people were able to move about in electric vehicles.

Scott Keogh, president and CEO of the US unit, said of the name change: "We might be changing out our K for a T, but what we aren't changing is this brand's commitment to making best-in-class vehicles for drivers and people everywhere.

"The idea of a 'people's car' is the very fabric of our being.

"We have said, from the beginning of our shift to an electric future, that we will build EVs for the millions, not just millionaires.

"This name change signifies a nod to our past as the peoples' car and our firm belief that our future is in being the peoples' electric car."