The Volkswagen brand is moving ahead with preparations for its major electric offensive by launching a comprehensive e-mobility competence programme. Within the framework of the “Future Electronic Engineer Program” (FEEP), 100 young engineers and skilled workers throughout the world will be trained as top production experts.
As start-of-production specialists, they will occupy future-oriented positions in planning, the pilot hall, the e-mobility model group, the pre-series centre and electronics development. The first participants to complete the three- year programme will support the run-up phase of the I.D. family: the new generation of full-electric vehicles based on the modular electrification toolkit (MEB) in Zwickau.
The new training programme has been initiated by the Volkswagen brand pilot hall in Wolfsburg, which forms part of the Production and Logistics Board of Management division. Plants in China, Brazil, Argentina, the USA and Mexico are also participating in the programme, which is supported by Volkswagen’s volunteering initiative and local universities. From June onwards, young specialists from Germany, China and the Americas will be participating in the programme.
Oliver Wessel, Head of the Pilot Hall, is responsible for the product creation process of all Volkswagen models together with his team. They are ensuring that series production of the models starts in the optimum way, and aim to provide one of the most comprehensive specialist training schemes in the industry with the FEEP.
“This year and next year, we will have to master about 80 starts of production. The vehicles have more digital intelligence on board than ever before. These are severe challenges. And the situation will become even more challenging with the MEB models. We need start-of-production specialists who can provide local support at our plants when the need arises and ensure a good start of production. We intend to implement outstanding volume production that meets our high quality requirements.”
The successful FEEP trainees will act as “midwives” for the new electric cars to be launched on the market as part of Volkswagen’s major electric offensive. Thomas Ulbrich, Member of the brand Board of Management responsible for E-Mobility, outlines the dimensions: “Within three years, Volkswagen will be starting production of a total of 27 electric car models for four brands in three regions of the world. At the Zwickau plant alone, models of three Group brands will roll off the production lines. In future, our MEB plants throughout the world will need young engineers who are thoroughly conversant with the requirements for production of the new vehicle architecture and also have considerable practical experience.”
Participants entering the programme in fields such as vehicle informatics or data logistics will normally have completed a practically oriented course of studies. Initially, they will be provided with basic training on commissioning at the Volkswagen brand pilot hall in Wolfsburg and will work on current vehicle projects such as the first compact I.D. Following this stage, they will receive intensive seminars and will work on projects with gradually increasing requirements. They will then complete an assignment to another country where they will work on starts of production and benefit from practically oriented support by highly qualified mentors and senior experts working on a volunteer basis.