Volkswagen is betting heavily on its next electrical architecture, called SSP EV and which will take over from the current MEB platform, used by the VW ID.3, ID.4, ID.5, ID.Buzz and ID.7 but also by Audi for the Q4 e-Tron, Cupra with the Born and Skoda for the Enyaq and the Enyaq Coupe. The main challenge of this new platform concerns the software dimension which had been delayed and led the Volkswagen group to delay the launch in 2028/2029. Finally, it will be well in 2026 as initially announced in 2021.
Economies of scale
This SSP EV platform should, among other things, be used for the Artemis project managed by Audi and will be used by all brands of the Volkswagen group. In total, Volkswagen plans to equip around 40 million cars with the various modules making up this new architecture. Knowing that electric platforms can cover up to 75% of material costs against about 10% on thermal engine models. Oliver Blume, head of the VW group, estimates that a majority of models based on the SSP platform will reach the same profit margin threshold as combustion engine models. A much lower parity with the current MEB architecture. In addition, Mr. Blume estimates that the SSP EV platform should enable a 30% reduction in development costs and investments compared to the MEB.
Global battery cell
To reduce costs, the SSP EV platform will use a unique new type of battery cells that will allow different chemical compositions to be used. For the « basic » models, the more economical LFP (lithium-iron-phosphate) option. For the most efficient variants, the battery can be recharged from 10 to 80% in just 12 minutes, or 3 times less than with the MEB platform.
Driving without hands
One of the strengths of this new SSP EV platform will be its 2.0 software architecture which has posed so many problems in terms of development. According to Volkswagen, it should allow level 4 autonomous driving, understand without hands.
Distribution of roles
Oliver Blume recalled that the development of certain elements specific to the different market segments in which the group’s brands operate will be taken care of by Volkswagen for the small format models of the Audi, Cupra, Skoda and VW brands, by Audi for the vehicles compact and mid-size models from Audi, Porsche, Skoda and VW, while Porche will design the components for the 14 large top-of-the-range models from Audi, Bentley, Lamborghini and Porsche. For the latter, the objective will be to reach 1.4 million vehicles sold by 2038 for a turnover of €150 billion and profit margins of more than 20%.
However, the arrival of the SSP EV platform will not mean the end of the MEB, which will receive an evolution called MEB+ and launched in 2025. The latter will reduce the charging time by 10 to 80% from 35 to 21 minutes and will allow level 2+ autonomous driving. It will be used in parallel with the PPE architecture that will be found on theAudi Q6 e-Tron and his cousin Electric Porsche Macan from 2024.