A bit of news that has gone under the radar: at the Frankfurt Auto Show, Volkswagen Group Chairman Matthias Muller dropped a bombshell, saying that the German company’s house of brands would all have a fully electrified lineup of vehicles by 2030 – at the latest.
The initiative is called Roadmap E, and while Volkswagen is focusing mostly on it automotive holdings, the Germans have made obvious signs that they are including their Italian motorcycle company, Ducati, in this push to go electric.
The most obvious indication comes from the company’s press statement. In it, the Volkswagen Group says that by 2030 “there will be at least one electrified version of each of the 300 or so Group models across all brands and markets.”
Adding credence that Ducati has an electric future ahead of it is that fact that in the background graphic for the announcement, the Ducati logo sat proudly with the other marques in the VW Group, like Lamborghini, Audi, Volkswagen, Porsche, etc.
We reached out to Ducati for comment about this news, and got a disappointing non-response. But there are some clues from Ducati CEO Claudio Domenicali that an electric Ducati motorcycle is something that we will see from the Italian brand.
Talking at the unveiling of the Ducati Desmosedici Stradale engine, Domenicali made mention of electrics being the next step for Ducati, after the new V4 power plant of course.
“We will have an electrical engine before later, but so far let’s be excited – having some exciting engines like this [V4] and enjoy life,” said Domenicali to the assembled MotoGP press.
In the past, Domenicali has hedged his bets about electrics when talking to the press, and he usual notes that the technology is interesting, but not ready for use on a production motorcycle.
With advances in battery technology around the corner though, the feasibility of an electric Ducati motorcycle becomes more real with each passing day.
However, just in seeing the response to Ducati’s plans for a V4-powered superbike, one has to wonder if the Italian company is ready for such a massive change in drivetrains – or more specifically, if loyal Ducatisti are ready for such a change.
Ducati obviously has some time before VW’s Roadmap E mandate kicks in, but when you consider the effort and planning that it will take to electrify an entire motorcycle lineup, you can bet that these are busy times in Bologna.
Source: VW Group