Volkswagen is reportedly set to change the name of its U.S. operations to “Voltswagen of America,” highlighting the German automaker’s all-electric vehicle efforts.
According to a recent report from CNBC, Volkswagen erroneously posted a press release to its media site on Monday, one month ahead of schedule. The release was dated April 29th, and was subsequently removed from the VW media site.
Update: Volkswagen officially confirmed the news in a press release issued on March 30th, then retracted the press release on April 1st and admitted it was purely a marketing stunt to promote the release of its new fully electric model, the 2021 Volkswagen ID.4.
VW will leverage “Volstwagen of America” as an operating unit of Volkswagen of America and subsidiary of Volkswagen AG, with the Voltswagen branding used for exterior badging on all electrically powered VW vehicles. Volkswagen’s internal combustion vehicles would continue to use the established VW emblem seen on the current lineup.
Although the new branding effort sounds like an April Fools joke come early, it certainly falls in line with the German automaker’s latest pivot to all-electric vehicles. VW has doubled down on its EV efforts since the infamous Dieselgate emissions scandal of 2015, introducing a variety of new concepts and a new ID sub-brand to lead the way, the latter of which is set to debut the new Volkswagen ID.4, VW’s first long-range SUV for the U.S. VW hopes to launch 70 new EVs worldwide by 2029.
All told, the new “Voltswagen” branding would undoubtedly bolster VW’s image in the EV segment, which has seen a good deal of new competition as of late, including from General Motors.
As a reminder, General Motors has announced plans to launch 30 new EVs by 2025, and already has its own all-electric vehicle technology branding in place, namely Ultium Battery tech and Ultium Drive and Motor tech. Additionally, General Motors is building a new production facility designed to mass-produce EV batteries via a joint venture with South Korean supplier LG Chem dubbed Ultium Cells LLC. The most recent GM EV debuts include the new 2022 Chevy Bolt EUV and refreshed 2022 Bolt EV, the all-new 2022 GMC Hummer EV, and the near-production Cadillac Lyriq show car.