For the second consecutive time, Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles (VWCV) realised an increase in earnings of around half a billion euros in 2022, finishing the year with an operating profit of 529 million euros. Sales also rose again, reaching 11.5 billion euros (prior year 9.9 billion euros) despite a slight decline in units shipped.
During the digital press conference, Carsten Intra, Chairman of the Brand Executive Board, and Michael Obrowski, Board Member for Finance and IT, thanked the entire Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles team for these strong annual financial results. The highlight of 2022 was the market launch of the ID. Buzz1), an all-electric vehicle with full connectivity. In just a few months, it won practically every media, audience, and design award. The ID. Buzz1) is also the platform on which VWCV is further developing autonomous driving, and the production vehicle will be presented in 2025. In 2022, the new Amarok2) also celebrated its world premiere, seamlessly following its predecessor as a premium pick-up with many new technical updates.
Carsten Intra presented a 10-point plan for the current year which contains priorities for 2023 and will consistently contribute towards the GRIP 2030 corporate strategy.
Global vehicle deliveries by VWCV fell back to 328,600 units in 2022 (prior year 359,500), but market shares in key regions increased substantially: in Europe, for instance, by 1.5 percentage points to a current share of nearly 13 per cent. In particular, market share in the company’s home market of Germany grew to over 23 per cent, where deliveries also increased to more than 98,000 vehicles (growth compared to the prior year: 8 per cent). Thanks to the market launches of the ID. Buzz1) and ID. Buzz Cargo1), VWCV boosted its deliveries of all-electric vehicles to 7,500 – more than twice as many as in the prior year. Strong demand for products from Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles also remained on a high level in 2022: orders received reached a record high of nearly 300,000 vehicles.
Compared to the prior year, sales rose by more than 15 per cent to 11.5 billion euros, and operating profit climbed to 529 million euros. “If we take the two years 2021 and 2022 together, our combined profit turnaround amounts to around one billion euros,” said Michael Obrowski, Board Member for Finance. Return on sales was also significantly increased in 2022 to 4.6 per cent, and it is forecast to surpass the 5 per cent mark in the current year. Obrowski explained that the strong figures were due to positive effects of the product mix and a sustained trend towards higher-end models that have good margins. Other key factors contributing to profits were the company’s consistent cost discipline and good used car and after-sales business. The new ID. Buzz1) and the new Amarok2) will free up additional growth potential for the coming years. “Our target for this year is to improve our positive net cash flow to more than 500 million euros,” explained Obrowski.
Pre-sales of the ID. Buzz Pro1) and ID. Buzz Cargo were already extremely successful in 2022 with more than 21,000 orders received. To date, more than 32,000 vehicles have already been sold. And that’s not all. The all-electric Bulli with full connectivity is winning nearly every national and international award for its class – the most prestigious title being Van of the Year 2023. Dr Carsten Intra: “The ID. Buzz1) is a technology platform and a likeable vehicle all in one. Wherever it appears, people turn their heads and are visibly delighted! It is this enthusiasm of our customers that is making VWCV strong.” With the world premiere and market launch of the new Amarok, VWCV is continuing the success story of its premium pick-up. Here too, VWCV CEO Carsten Intra sees great customer potential: “This vehicle also has what it takes to turn customers into fans.”
Carsten Intra presented a 10-point plan for the current year. Its concrete targets and actions contribute to the GRIP 2030 corporate strategy. These include further electrification of the VWCV vehicle fleet. In summer 2023, the ID. Buzz1)with a long wheelbase will be presented. The Bulli will return to the North American market in this version. After the Multivan, the Caddy will be the next to be offered as a PHEV – that is, in a hybrid version. In future, the battery-electric offering from the Ford- Volkswagen alliance will be expanded through the addition of a van in the one-tonne payload segment.
VWCV will build out the great success of its California model range by adding digital features and services to create a “California Universe” – bundling everything related to its business with camping models. Over the course of this year, VWCV will also present the next generation California based on the Multivan.
Another focus in 2023 will be implementing the ‘autonomous driving’ strategy. Following Volkswagen’s decision in 2022 to discontinue investment in ARGO AI for the development of autonomous driving, VWCV will be taking forward its original plans with a new partner. “We will introduce the new self-driving system in the first half of the year,” says Intra. Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles is the lead brand for autonomous driving in the Volkswagen Group, assuming responsibility for developing the MaaS – (Mobility as a Service) and TaaS (Transport as a Service) business areas. In 2023, VWCV will conduct extensive driving tests in Munich with its new partner. In Hamburg, first test customers will try out MOIA autonomous mobility services.
Carsten Intra: We will be presenting the production version of our ID. Buzz AD vehicles to you in 2025. Initially, they will be used at MOIA in Hamburg. Other cities in Germany and the USA will follow.”
“Sustainability is not just an agenda item in our programme; it is actually the foundation for everything that we do,” says Intra. The brand’s understanding of sustainability goes far beyond CO2 reduction in its vehicle fleet: “We want to actively do our part to contribute towards handing over an intact foundation to future generations for living and working. This is our vision and our responsibility,” explains the VWCV CEO. In the current year, we want to transfer this insight into a comprehensive strategy known as the ‘ESG strategy’ for the areas of Environment, Social Responsibility and Governance.
Carsten Intra sums it up: “We are Europe’s top supplier of commercial vehicles. We are Europe’s number one for families and leisure. And in the enormous market for autonomous mobility solutions we are in pole position. In short: VWCV is on course!”
1) ID. Buzz Pro: power consumption in kWh/100 km: combined 21.7 – 20.6; CO2 emissions in g/km: combined 0. The only consumption and emission figures available for the vehicle are now based on the WLTP, not NEDC.
2) Amarok: Combined fuel consumption in l/100 km: 8.5 – 10.5, combined CO2 emissions in g/km: 222 – 274. The only consumption and emission figures available for the vehicle are now based on the WLTP, not NEDC.