VW powers up grid to take on Tesla

Volkswagen is powering up to take on Tesla.

The German giant plans to double staff numbers at its charging and energy division.

That's part of moves to massively increase its network of fast-charging points for electric vehicles.

VW expects to have 45,000 worldwide by 2025 - or four times today's number.

They'll be open to drivers of other brands, unlike Tesla's exclusive network.

Next year VW will also roll out a new system to make paying for electricity at public chargers quicker and easier.

Even so, it has some catching up to do. Tesla already has about 30,000 of its own 'Superchargers', and the number is rising fast.

VW has now hired a German energy industry veteran to lead its efforts.

It's teamed up with energy firms including Italy's Enel and Spain's Iberdrola to speed progress.

The automaker is even selling electricity to owners of its EVs.

Overall, VW dominates the industry in terms of investment in electric cars.

It plans to invest almost $40 billion in battery EVs by 2025, and it hopes the fast-rising number of charge points will encourage people to buy them.

Even so, the challenge of meeting demand for charging remains daunting.

Just in Europe, the EU estimates it will take investment of over $5 billion a year every year until 2040.

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