The automaker is committed to ensuring that the manufacture and delivery of the Electric ID Series is carbon neutral, including for its supply chain and logistics. This is also part of the automaker’s ‘goTOzero impact logistics’ strategy, which focuses on green rail transport (in Germany) and the use of liquefied natural gas (LNG)-powered ocean-going car carriers for deliveries. abroad.
VW moves ID.4s from Zwickau by train to the port of Emden, which is dedicated to handling VW vehicles for export. As part of the goTOzero strategy, the VW Group aims to switch all vehicles it moves in Germany with public rail provider Deutsche Bahn (DB) to “green electricity” by the end of this year. This also applies to parts and materials, and as has been reported elsewhere, the life cycle of the ID.4 is consistent with this strategy as battery modules and battery systems for the ID .4 are delivered to the factories in Braunschweig and Zwickau by rail.
“In Germany and Austria, we have already switched our rail transport, including equipment and vehicles, to green electricity with the leading German transport company DB Cargo,” confirmed a spokesperson for VW Group Logistics.
By green electricity, VW means the energy produced by wind farms and hydropower plants. In addition, the automaker said last year that it intends to increase the number of vehicles transported by rail in Germany to 60% by 2022, an 8% increase from the number currently moved.
“Task [of goTOzero] is to minimize environmental impacts [and] in logistics, we operate according to the principles of avoid, reduce, convert and compensate, ”said a spokesperson for the automaker. “LNG ships and rail transport, powered as much as possible by electricity produced from renewable sources, are important steps in this regard. “
Scott Mabry of Volkswagen Group of America will discuss sustainable vehicle logistics at the 2021 Finished Vehicle Logistics North America Live conference, which will be held June 22-23.
LNG car carriers
At the port of Emden, ID.4 electric vehicles are loaded onto car transporter ships along with other VW Group models (including other battery electric and plug-in hybrid models). VW uses a total of nine vessels on the North Atlantic route as part of its weekly in-house charter service.
Currently this includes two LNG vessels chartered by Siem Car Carriers – the Siem Confucius and Siem Aristotle, each with a capacity of 4,800 vehicle units. They deliver ID.4s to the US ports of Davisville (Rhode Island), Baltimore (Maryland) and Jacksonville (Florida) on the east coast, and Houston (Texas) on the Gulf coast. VW is also looking to confirm two ports on the west coast of the United States.
It takes 27 days for vehicles to reach the first US port from the time they leave the Zwickau plant. Upon arrival in the United States, the ID.4 is treated from a processing standpoint like any other vehicle delivered to its side, both EV and those driven by a conventional internal combustion engine (ICE).
“We have several other BEVs [battery EV] and PHEV [plug-in hybrid] VW Group vehicles of America [VWGoA] family, ”said a spokesperson for the automaker’s US division. “With some differentiation in handling battery charging requirements, these cars are handed over to carriers for dealer delivery with our ICE. [internal combustion engine] Vehicles. “
VWGoA works at eight locations in the United States for these services and terminal operations are provided by Amports, Mid-Texas International, Norad, Pasha and Wallenius Wilhelmsen.
Read the full article detailing the sustainable delivery of the ID.4 by VW from Europe to the United States in the upcoming summer issue of Automotive Logistics and Finished Vehicle Logistics magazine, published in July.
VWGoA does not have the same setup for green rail transport in the United States, but has stated that it is committed to offering an optimized multimodal delivery service that combines rail and truck, and that includes pick-up. the weight of the heavier electric SUV.
“The ID.4 is shipped by train and by truck,” VWGoA said. “We did not see any problem with the weight on the rail side. [and] with appropriate load planning and product mix. Although heavier, the ID.4 did not have a significant impact on the load factor [on the road]. “
The automaker works with 25 contract road transport partners in the United States and meets with them regularly to discuss sustainability and environmental goals, according to the automaker.
“We continue to have discussions with our carrier partners on the development of efficient, safe and cost effective solutions that implement alternative fuel measures for our vehicle deliveries,” said the spokesperson for Volkswagen in the United States. .
Outbound transportation planning is done for VW and Audi brand vehicles in the United States by the Vehicle Logistics team in Reston, Virginia (and there are similar teams in Canada and Mexico).
Looking ahead to the future of electric vehicle development in the United States, VW said it was encouraged by the Biden administration’s support for electric vehicles and applauded the government’s efforts to mitigate the negative effects. battery and semiconductor shortages.
“The administration needs to ensure that EV policies support, rather than fork, the market so that the United States remains a leader in electric mobility,” said the VWGoA spokesperson. “Only policies that create a strong, fair and comprehensive electric vehicle market will accelerate consumer adoption and create the national centers of gravity necessary to attract electric vehicle innovation and manufacturing to the United States. “
VWGoA intends to start production of the ID.4 at its plant in Chattanooga, Tennessee, from 2022.