Volkswagen Group China and Anhui Jianghuai Automobile Group (JAC) will develop a battery-electric vehicle platform for production at the JAC Volkswagen joint venture.
Under a memorandum of understanding signed at the official residence of the Spanish prime minister in Madrid, JAC Volkswagen will introduce the SEAT brand in China by 2021 and jointly electrify SEAT products.
Construction of a JAC Volkswagen R&D center will start before the end of the year and will focus on connectivity, autonomous driving and other future strategic directions.
“E-mobility along with digitalization, connectivity and autonomous driving is the future of the mobility industry, and China has established itself as a major driver of this transformation,” VW Board of Management Chairman Herbert Diess says in a statement.
“This partnership also represents the benefits of a globalized approach to delivering sustainable mobility.”
SEAT President Luca de Meo says the agreement allows the Spanish automaker to move forward with the strategic development to introduce the brand into China and take a further step toward SEAT’s globalization strategy.
“China is the market leader in EVs and SEAT wants to help boost this technology to respond to customer needs and make mobility increasingly more sustainable,” he says.
SEAT, VW China and JAC signed an agreement last July in which SEAT joined the venture and became VW’s lead brand in the project.
The products to be built on the BEV platform will address Chinese customers’ e-mobility requirements, the companies say. The R&D center aims to develop connectivity and autonomous-driving technologies specifically tailored to the Chinese market.