High range, extremely short charging times, new standards in terms of digitalisation and revolutionary production. The new Volkswagen sedan will be launched in 2026, with a “business model 2.0” intended to generate digital revenues over the car’s life cycle.
Volkswagen has unveiled a preview of Project Trinity. Taking centre stage will be a new, fully electric sedan built in Wolfsburg from 2026 that will set new standards in terms of range, charging speed and digitalisation; it will also feature a highly advanced level of automation – reaching up to level 4 of autonomous driving. The name Trinity derives from the Latin “trinitas” and stands for the tri-unity. For Volkswagen, Trinity represents three crucial themes: a newly developed electronics platform with state-of-the-art software, the simplification of the supply chain, and fully networked and intelligent production at its plant in Wolfsburg.
A lighthouse project
“Trinity is a sort of crystallisation point for our ACCELERATE strategy, a lighthouse project, our software dream car,” says Ralf Brandstätter, CEO of the Volkswagen brand. The new vehicle architecture will set standards in terms of range, charging speed (the objective is to make charging as fast as refuelling) and digitalisation. In addition, Trinity will make autonomous driving possible for many people. By the planned start of series production in 2026, Trinity will already be at Level 2+ of autonomous driving and be technically ready for Level 4.
The time machine
“We are using our economies of scale to make autonomous driving available to as many people as possible and to build a learning neural network. In this way, we are creating the conditions for the continuous exchange of data from our vehicle fleet – for example, on the traffic situation, on obstacles or on accidents,” explains Brandstätter. Trinity thus saves people time and stress by helping them arrive at their destination as relaxed as if they had been driven by a chauffeur – even after a long highway trip. “Trinity will therefore become a kind of 'time machine' for our users.”
With the production of the series version, the Wolfsburg plant will become a showcase for state-of-the-art, intelligent and fully networked production processes. “We will completely rethink the way we build cars and introduce revolutionary approaches. Digitalisation, automation and lightweight construction will play an important role here,” Brandstätter continues. Future vehicle models such as Trinity will be produced with considerably fewer variants, and the hardware will be largely standardised. The cars will already have virtually everything on board and users will be able to activate desired functions on demand at any time via the digital ecosystem in the car. This will significantly reduce complexity in production.
The on-demand car
By developing the automobile into a software-based product, Volkswagen is creating the conditions for new, data-based business models. Entry barriers to individual mobility will be lowered while at the same time even more attractive usage packages will be offered. Volkswagen intends to generate additional revenue in the usage phase – for charging and energy services, for software-based functions that customers can book as needed, or for automated driving. “In the future, the individual configuration of the vehicle will no longer be determined by the hardware at the time of purchase. Instead, customers will be able to add functions on demand at any time via the digital ecosystem in the car,” says Brandstätter.
Source: Volkswagen AG