German automaker isn't backing down in its commitment to electric vehicles, and says it will be carbon neutral by 2050.
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Volkswagen Group's leadership has announced a ramping up of its already ambitious electric vehicle plans at its 2019 annual press conference.

The German automaker now plans to launch 70 new electric cars by 2028, up from the 50 it had previously committed to.

It now predicts it will make 22 million electric vehicles in the next decade, up from the previous forecast of 15 million.

If all goes according to plan, 40 per cent of the group's sales will be electric by 2030.

Production of the company's first mass-market pure electric vehicles begins this year, when the Porsche Taycan and the Audi E-Tron crossover start trundling out the factory gate.

Volkswagen says there are 20,000 reservations for both of these initial models.

Next year, the company will be sales of the first vehicles based on its new MEB electric car architecture, starting with the Volkswagen ID hatch.

It will be followed up with production versions of the Volkswagen ID Crozz crossover, ID Buzz kombi van, ID Vizzion sedan, Seat el-Born hatch, and Skoda Vision E crossover.

The company estimates it will spend €30 billion ($48 billion) by 2023 on its electric vehicle roll out.

In addition to ramping up its EV efforts, the company has also pledged to be fully CO2 neutral by 2050 "in all areas from fleet to production to administration".

The automaker will begin first by reducing its CO2 output, switching to renewable energy sources, and compensating for unavoidable greenhouse gas emissions. The company says it has also begun to make changes to its supply chain, with particular effort being put into steel and aluminium production.

Interim targets include halving CO2 emissions from its own factories, compared to 2010 levels, by 2025, and converting its coal-fired power plant in Wolfsburg to natural gas.