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HomeValue InvestingVolkswagen (VWAGY) Inventory Evaluation

Volkswagen (VWAGY) Inventory Evaluation

Fast Inventory Overview

Ticker: VWAGY

Supply: Yahoo Finance

Key Information

Business Automible
Market Capitalization ($M) $102,751
Worth to gross sales 0.4
Worth to Free Money Circulate 4.7
Dividend yield 4.1%
Gross sales ($M) 263,651
Free money circulation/share $3.6
Fairness per share $28.03
P/E 5.2

1. Govt Abstract

Volkswagen is the world’s second-largest automobile firm by income, behind solely Toyota. The Volkswagen Group consists of ten European manufacturers from 5 nations: Volkswagen, Volkswagen Business Autos, Porsche, Lamborghini, Audi, Bentley, Ducati, CUPRA, SKODA, and SEAT.

Volkswagen is the kind of firm markets have hated for many years. Capital intensive, “outdated trade”, polluting, primarily based outdoors the US. Making vehicles has undoubtedly not been glamourous currently except you make electrical automobiles (EVs). The dominant narrative has been that legacy automakers are doomed to go the best way of the dodo birds, changed by Tesla and its numerous copycats.

You may see a video of the meteoritic rise of Tesla’s market cap within the tweet right here. In 2021, it was as massive as that of the subsequent 10 largest automakers TOGETHER.

I believe that is about to alter, for the straightforward cause that the main automakers are catching up and difficult Tesla’s domination of the EV (Electrical automobiles) market. Volkswagen is on the forefront of this shift and is ideally positioned to convey inexpensive EVs to the market.

The group has the commercial capability, monetary sources, know-how, and branding energy to handle efficiently the transition to electrical mobility.

The change to electrical may also present VW with the proper event to modernize its company and monetary construction. Rather a lot has been achieved on this path already, as you will notice on this report. VW has additionally invested closely in turning the commercial large right into a tech firm, from software program to self-driving vehicles.

Lastly, the VW group may also profit from the deliberate Porsche IPO and has different prestigious manufacturers that they might spin off sooner or later.

None of those developments appear priced in at this level. Tesla skeptics have been crushed down by years of failed shorts technique, so nobody appears to note that the world’s second-largest automobile producer goes all-in on electrical vehicles.

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2. Prolonged Abstract: Why Volkswagen?

The Electrification Problem

The transition to electrical automobiles is the largest problem the automobile trade has confronted in many years. Tesla has been constantly main the pack, making a transferring goalpost for legacy producers. VW is uniquely positioned to catch up and exhibits early indicators of doing so. Rivals are centered on different applied sciences or ultra-low value ranges.

Re-Studying Innovation

VW has constructed a brand new ground-up improvement course of for constructing EVs, which it’s sharing throughout the Firm’s totally different manufacturers. This dramatically will increase the synergy between the group manufacturers, decreasing waste on redundant R&D. VW can be embracing the way forward for vehicles as linked gadgets, with large progress on software program, devoted electronics {hardware}, and investments in self-driving know-how.

Porsche IPO, Dangers & Valuation

VW plans to promote 25% of its Porsche possession this fall. Half of the proceeds will probably be used to finance electrification, half distributed as a particular dividend. The VW group’s manufacturers are more likely to command a premium when buying and selling individually.

VW dangers are largely associated to precise and potential provide chain issues. A recession would clearly damage as properly, however valuation and earnings appear consistent with the 10-year common and don’t mirror the highs of a cycle.

3. The Electrification Problem

One Battery To Rule Them All

In case you are following monetary markets, I doubt you could have missed the hordes of devoted Tesla buyers. Tesla’s worth has just lately reached some extent the place it was value greater than your complete conventional automobile trade.

The image may be very totally different once we have a look at the variety of vehicles offered. With the trade churning out a complete of round 70 million models/12 months in 2021, the 1 million manufacturing capability just lately reached by Tesla appears rather a lot much less spectacular.

After all, Tesla’s market cap relies on the idea that conventional automakers won’t ever meet up with the EV market chief. So let’s have a look at the newest EV gross sales numbers. The picture under from September 2021 would point out that Tesla certainly nonetheless utterly dominates the trade.

I highlighted VW electrical vehicles. You may see that moreover an ultra-low-cost “soapbox” automobile from China, VW was the second-best behind Tesla, however nonetheless far behind.

However that is outdated information. The ID.4 is shortly rising as a severe competitor, with gross sales up 65% in Q1 2022. At 30,300 models offered, the ID.4 is now above each different mannequin however Tesla fashions 3 and Y. You may see a assessment of the ID.4 on this article.

The ID.4 begins at $40,760 within the US, considerably cheaper than Tesla’s least expensive entry, the Mannequin 3, which begins at $48,440.

Extra importantly, the ID.4 was lower than a 3rd of the VW group sale of EVs. The VW group offered near 100,000 EVs in Q1 2022, unfold out between Audi e-Tron, Porsche Taycan, and so forth. Every of these is of equal high quality to Tesla’s luxurious fashions. It in all probability may have achieved even higher, however “VW provide of EV for the US market ran out“.

Altogether, The VW group EV gross sales in Q1 2022 are roughly 1/3 of Tesla’s gross sales. If market caps adopted EV gross sales quantity, VW needs to be valued at $276B, in comparison with the present $118B.

VW additionally delivered 1,800,000 conventional vehicles in Q1 2022, or x18 of its EV quantity. I might not base a VW valuation on Tesla, clearly an overvalued firm, however nonetheless, it put issues in perspective.

Is Tesla the Apple of Automakers?

If it’s essential to bear in mind just one factor from this report, bear in mind this part. When learning Tesla, the perfect parallel could be Apple. Fanatical supporters, excessive costs, top-level tech, and glossy or shocking design. And that’s alright. I believe that is the proper area of interest for Tesla, and judging by Apple’s historical past, it may very well be a really worthwhile one.

If the smartphone market is an effective indication of the way forward for EVs, this implies a counterpart to the Apple technique. You would as properly determine and purchase the long run Samsung, which barely outsells Apple in whole unit quantity.

Apple / Tesla Samsung / Volkswagen
Product numbers Few, pushed by new interplay Very massive, cowl any use case
Expertise degree/Efficiency At all times on the prime From low cost to adequate to excessive tech
Pricing Larger vary From low cost to high-end
Branding energy Maximal Well-known however not excellent
Company nature Founder-led, centered on innovation Faceless, massive outdated company, with a number of manufacturers or actions
Aggressive benefits Low advertising value
Model energy
Excessive margins
Giant industrial capability & expertise
Loads of money circulation
Price-efficient R&D and manufacturing

The Apple/Tesla technique is a robust one. It’s also a limiting one. By tying a lot of the product and model to luxurious and id, it locks itself out of elements of the market. A low-cost iPhone wouldn’t be a “actual” iPhone. It appears the street to a $25k Tesla is equally sluggish. The “cooler” cybertruck goes to reach earlier than the “boring” semi-truck (a mission lingering in Tesla limbo since 2019) or “simply low cost” fashions.

Volkswagen (whose title means “the individuals’s automobile”) doesn’t have such an issue. It could actually commercialize cheaper and mid-range fashions below the VW, Seat, and Skoda manufacturers. It sells sports activities vehicles below Porsche and luxurious fashions below Audi, Lamborghini, Bentley, and Cupra. If it needs to, it even can enter the marketplace for electrical bikes with Ducati. It additionally supplies electrical variations of its Scania vehicles, MAN buses, and VW business vans.

For an ideal illustration of how VW is creating informal automobiles that fill niches unfit for the Tesla model, we are able to have a look at the reimagined iconic VW van ID Buzz.

So if Tesla is the Apple of EVs, Volkswagen has the potential to turn out to be the Samsung of EVs.

It should probably be the grasp of the mid-price vary part for EVs, whereas additionally taking a sizeable chunk of all the opposite sectors, from low-cost to luxurious and sport. This needs to be helped by the arrival of a number of new merchandise, notably the ID.5, ID Buzz, and Lengthy-range Aero, but in addition the cheaper ID life.

The Different Rivals

The automotive trade is a somewhat fragmented one, and I count on it to remain this manner. For instance, I count on a minimum of one of many Huge 3 (GM, Ford, Chrysler) to remain vital within the US market and be joined by Tesla on prime of that market.

Judging by this listing of the most affordable EVs, with Mazda, Kia, Nissan, and Hyundai, the low vary phase is more likely to be managed by Japanese corporations. This leaves VW nearly alone within the worthwhile mid-range phase.

I additionally count on the Chinese language and Southeast Asian producers to take over the area of interest of the ultra-cheap market, under $15k-$20k EVs. In that phase, we may also discover Renault-Dacia with the Duster Spring. Their small batteries will confine them to city and suburban utilization.

The one competitor that would or ought to have been a severe risk to VW was Toyota. It had the essential mass, repute, and sources to duplicate VW and even beat it. As an alternative of competing head entrance on battery EVs, although, Toyota appears to imagine in a deal with hybrids and even hydrogen. Relying on the pace of the electrical transition, this may show a uniquely insightful technique or a horrible blunder.

That is nonetheless the largest risk to VW sooner or later, in all probability far more than Tesla. I encourage any investor in VW to pay shut consideration from 2025 onward to Toyota’s progress on solid-state batteries.

You’ll discover I didn’t point out different pure EV startups. It’s because after Nikola’s outright fraud, the closest contender, Ford-backed Rivian, is in freefall after failing to ramp up manufacturing. Merely put, making vehicles is a tricky enterprise, and there’s a cause why there have been only a few new entrants within the markets within the final many years.

4. Re-Studying Innovation

Re-Mastering the Artwork of Automaking

By its personal admission, VW was too sluggish to react to the pattern of electrification. It’s now working additional time to appropriate that mistake. Partly, its consideration was distracted by preventing a rearguard battle towards air pollution management on diesel vehicles. This led VW to falsify air pollution stories in a scandal now often known as the Dieselgate.

The scandal resulted in pricey fines and a number of other executives had been arrested or fired. It additionally pushed VW to embrace the EV revolution. The corporate was punished with $2.7B in damages however was additionally pressured to take a position $2B in clear emission infrastructures. You may learn extra in regards to the flip to electrical automobiles from the corporate’s CEO on this interview.

VW is an knowledgeable at making nice ICE (Inner Combustion Engine) automobiles. So it wanted a number of years to learn to switch this experience into electrical engines. The talents had been already there for nice steering, gearboxes, brakes, suspensions, and all the opposite elements that go into a contemporary car.

Till now, VW has basically been a conglomerate of manufacturers. Every of the manufacturers had its personal designs, with restricted overlap. This led to a really advanced provide chain with, for instance, a whole bunch of various gearboxes. The change to electrical has turn out to be a possibility to revamp ALL the VW group’s new vehicles round frequent core {hardware} and software program via the shared Scalable System Platform.

That is now dealt with by the newly shaped Volkswagen part Group division. Administration appears assured that they will strike the high-quality stability between conserving manufacturers uniqueness and customary designs:

There are a variety of similarities which we are able to leverage in scale — much more so on the software program aspect. In case you drove an Audi or Porsche and Volkswagen at the moment, you’d in all probability have totally different {hardware} and software program for navigation, for local weather management, and even for the window lifter. That’s not essential. … Software program affords an enormous alternative for economies of scale, nonetheless permitting for model differentiation.

Now, a Porsche can stay a Porsche, even higher than at the moment. An Audi can stay an Audi, and Volkswagen will supply a broad vary of merchandise, however the fundamental software program stack could be very, very related. Software program is comparatively costly in automotive. Now it’s a one-time expenditure. … We expect that we’ve a superb likelihood to additionally turn out to be very aggressive in software program if we construct a standard fundamental software program for all of the manufacturers. 

Embracing the Digital Revolution

Dieselgate was the shock VW wanted to show towards the long run. Its innovation is concentrated on 3 areas: Batteries, Software program, and Autonomous Driving


VW is creating a hybrid resolution between full reliance on massive third events (CATL, Panasonic) and Tesla-style vertical integration. Its 2 principal companions are smaller battery producer NorthVolt and QuantumScape, a solid-state battery startup. It was contemplating an IPO for its battery division in 2021 however that appears to be on the again burner for now, with the Firm focusing as an alternative on the Porsche IPO (extra on that later).

VW can be investing closely in startups with beneficial know-how. For instance, a $400M funding in Group14, changing the standard graphite anode in lithium-ion batteries with a silicon-carbon materials, is boosting battery capability by 50%.

VW’s low-carbon profile can be helped by funding in new services, notably $10B in solar-powered factories in Spain for electrical vehicles and batteries.

The tip objective for VW is to maintain the excessive acceleration efficiency of EVs whereas additionally having very lengthy vary and quick charging. All of those will in all probability be totally achievable solely when solid-state batteries are totally carried out.

Software program and IT {hardware}

The CARIAD division is accountable for creating a group-wide software program stack, for use by all VW manufacturers by 2025-2030. This can make all VW vehicles linked gadgets, following the footsteps of the On-the-Air updates by Tesla. It additionally handles the design of devoted {hardware} permitting the removing of as much as 1 kilometer of cable per automobile in comparison with earlier designs.

Autonomous Driving

VW is partnering with and investing in Argo AI to develop autonomous driving options. Autonomous driving is a contentious matter amongst tech fans. Some count on it yesterday, others see it at finest 15 years sooner or later. Contemplating the fixed delays of Tesla Full Self Driving, it appears a tricky nut to crack. You may learn extra about Argo AI strategies in this interview with its CEO.

The trip pooling resolution MOIA and its devoted 6-seater are deliberate to enhance the autonomous driving options.

VW’s strategy is a cautious one, specializing in restricted autonomy in an outlined space, and increasing slowly from there. The cultural distinction between US startup tradition (the hare Tesla) and German industrialist (the tortoise VW) might be at play right here.

Our intention is to have the ability to drive a automobile as Volkswagen. We have now two areas: one is pushing robotaxi know-how with Argo. This includes shuttle providers, restricted areas, comparatively sluggish speeds — they’re sometimes ODD, which is realized and programmed. Then it goes space by space and metropolis by metropolis. The opposite method we’re pushing is non-public mobility: we’ve the Audi group and CARIAD group engaged on that as a result of we expect that autonomous driving is not going to solely cowl this space of robotaxis, but in addition non-public vehicles. Step-by-step: first we deal with driving at degree three or degree 4 on open highways — German autobahns — after which we get into extra advanced areas.

The Verge

5. Porsche IPO, Dangers & Valuation

Porsche AG IPO

A aspect discover: I’m talking of Porsche AG, the corporate manufacturing and promoting the Porsche vehicles. Don’t confuse this with one other firm, Porsche SE. Porsche SE is the holding of the Porsche household, which owns a big a part of VW, which in flip owns Porsche AG, the automobile firm. Fairly complicated I do know. Welcome to German company buildings.

VW acquired Porsche AG in 2012 and is planning the sale of 25% of the Firm this fall. Porsche AG has just lately proven an excellent gross revenue margin of 18.6%. The meant pricing of the IPO shouldn’t be but clear. For instance, Mercedes, BMW, and VW commerce at 5-6x earnings; Ferrari at 40x earnings. So the a number of on Porsche earnings will probably be a significant factor. The concept behind the IPO is to let Porsche AG commerce at luxurious/supercar multiples, as an alternative of “boring” massive automaker multiples.

At a center floor P/E between Ferrari and German automaker, this may give Porsche AG a valuation of $84B. Even at half of that, a $42B could be a big a part of VW’s $102B present valuation. Loads of debate exists about VW’s capability to carry its present “conglomerate low cost”. The second a part of this text supplies extra data on this challenge and can assist you to type your personal opinion.

Half of the proceedings of the IPO will probably be distributed to VW shareholders, and the remaining utilized to advancing VW’s electrification plans.

Different Manufacturers?

No plans have been introduced for the same IPO for the opposite luxurious model within the VW portfolio. Nonetheless, if the Porsche IPO is successful, I may simply see Lamborghini, Audi, Bentley and even Ducati obtain the identical “25% offered in an IPO” therapy. This is able to assist value discovery for these manufacturers/corporations, whereas nonetheless sustaining VW’s whole management over the manufacturers.

This isn’t as far-fetched as you possibly can assume. Final 12 months, VW obtained a $7.5B supply for Lamborghini for instance. VW refused the supply.


VW’s plans for electrification are the principle attraction to the inventory. Whichever of the highest 5 legacy automakers will handle the electrical transition will reap excellent rewards. Nonetheless, the trade is dealing with fairly a number of headwinds:

Recession Danger

After one of many longest bull markets in historical past, rising charges, inflation, and struggle in Europe have all contributed to an elevated danger of a worldwide recession. The automotive trade is notoriously cyclical. All of the current excessive income of VW and its opponents needs to be taken with a pinch of salt. We may be on the highs of the financial cycle, and gross sales within the subsequent few years may prove decrease than hoped.

Vitality Prices

VW is a German firm, and exploding vitality prices in Europe are an actual concern. The corporate is producing outdoors of Europe as properly, however this will nonetheless damage its dwelling market disproportionately. If Russian fuel stops flowing solely due to the Ukraine struggle or sanctions, this may probably trigger exploding costs for energy-intensive supplies like metal and batteries.

Provide Chain Disruption

This one is much less a possible danger as an ongoing concern. It additionally applies to most VW opponents. Chip shortages have plagued automakers for two years now. The current wave of Chinese language lockdowns shouldn’t be going to assist enhance the provision chain both.

On prime of that, an inexpensive however important part, a wiring harness, was largely provided from Ukraine.

Provide chain points restrict manufacturing, and output ranges are more likely to be disappointing in 2022. I count on VW to deal with it higher than its smaller opponents, however this may nonetheless damage gross sales quantity.

Lastly, some provide points may emerge in the long term. The availability of lithium, copper, cobalt, and nickel may be too quick to cowl all of the batteries automakers are planning to construct. New mines may take 10 years to get operational, so it is a severe danger. In that respect, VW may make a superb pair in a portfolio with the miner Rio Tinto (lined in a earlier report a number of months in the past). The rising prices of VW could be Rio Tinto’s income, decreasing the general danger of the portfolio.


An funding in VW is a wager that the corporate emerges on prime of the electrification pattern, or a minimum of as a significant participant. Resulting from Toyota’s deal with hybrid and different fuels like hydrogen, I believe that is probably. The persistent delays in an inexpensive Tesla automobile, construct high quality points, and branding points, make Tesla at most an equal, however not the domineering pressure individuals assume it’s. I believe the current ID.5 gross sales quantity displays this alteration in shopper notion in the case of EVs.

With a P/E of 5.3 and a value to free money circulation of 4.3, it might be robust to argue that VW is overvalued. My principal concern could be for this coming from abnormally excessive earnings or revenues in the previous few years.

Trying on the previous 10 years of income, web earnings, and revenue margin, I don’t see something out of line. Solely drops in 2016 (DieselGate) and 2020 (Covid) break the pattern. VW is a really regular and secure firm. I’m additionally happy to see that web earnings is secure even with the huge funding in electrification.

This isn’t an organization that may see a 10x rise in worth. However it provides a small dividend and may be far more secure than different overvalued parts of the market. An organization with a significant deal with software program, electrification, and self-driving can be providing the low valuation of an getting older industrial large.

As we transfer to bear market territory, will market notion change from on the lookout for dangerous hypergrowth to stability. You would argue that it’s already taking place. If it does, VW inventory will probably be there to capitalize on it. The Porsche AG IPO is one other doable catalyst, with the particular dividends seemingly not priced in.

In my opinion, for those who’re contemplating including an organization like VW to a portfolio, the principle focus needs to be on offering much less volatility to the portfolio whereas retaining the potential for respectable returns. Dividends and secure web earnings ought to present that, given the low multiples. Wanting a brutal worldwide recession, VW ought to present respectable returns, with an opportunity of a inventory value surge pushed by constructive EV gross sales and manufacturing figures or a profitable Porsche IPO.

The chance with these outdated industrial giants is the chance that they are going to be caught unaware of a know-how shift. You don’t wish to find yourself proudly owning the subsequent Kodak all the best way to zero. Contemplating the efforts VW has put into modernizing its line and innovation, I’m assured they are going to profit from the EV pattern as an alternative of being harmed by it.

6. Conclusion

Volkswagen is the kind of funding that may in all probability by no means present the very best returns in a portfolio. It’s a safer, extra mature sort of firm, decreasing general volatility. I might not essentially have appeared deeper if it was not promoting at a somewhat low cost value.

On prime of the value, I’m appreciative of the technique. The corporate didn’t rush into electrification, however when it determined to do the change, it did it proper. The product performances in mileage, high quality, and value present a degree of engineering equal or superior to Telsa, the market chief. The one perhaps lagging half, software program, is catching up at a wide ranging pace.

Growing the ID.4 and ID.5 was an enormous endeavor in design, battery know-how, electrical engine, and particular elements like gearboxes. This EV experience acquired in mid-price vehicles can now be introduced shortly to all value ranges, in addition to business automobiles, vehicles, buses, and even bikes.

I count on VW scaling up electrical automobiles will catch most observers without warning. The EV market acquired used to seeing the opening of a brand new Tesla Manufacturing unit on a brand new continent as massive information. With corporations of the dimensions of VW coming into the market aggressively, this will probably be a standard incidence.

VW may also have the ability to draw from its virtually 2 million conventional vehicles per 12 months gross sales to finance the transition. Its “legacy” operations additionally give it entry to a really deep pool of proficient engineers, designers, researchers, designers, testers, and so forth, whose abilities can comparatively simply be repurposed for EV fashions. The identical outdated true for model energy, PR contacts, and gross sales networks.

The flexibility to nonetheless earn cash for ICE (Inner Combustion Engine) vehicles whereas turning to EVs appears particularly helpful for me. If the transition to EVs seems slower than anticipated, or uncooked minerals for batteries are too uncommon or costly, VW can merely sluggish issues down a bit and preserve making a living promoting the vehicles that made the enterprise sturdy for many years.

Lastly, the wealthy panel of manufacturers within the VW group may very well be a supply of hidden worth. Luxurious or sports activities model tends to commerce at a premium. After Porsche, VW may progressively think about IPOs for Lamborghini, Bentley, Audi, and Ducati. I believe that the elements are value greater than the market worth for the entire group collectively.

Utilizing the Porsche IPO as a template, VW conserving 75% possession would permit simply sufficient value discovery, whereas conserving the model safely at dwelling. They’ll all profit from the Group R&D and customary base structure for the transition to EV. That is one thing impartial supercar corporations like Ferrari couldn’t afford with out turning into over-reliant on third-party suppliers.

Lastly, self-driving options comprise a variety of choices. I believe that even when Argo AI seems to not be the perfect technical resolution, its strategies will appease regulators higher than Teslas. Nobody needs 2-tons of steel driving round by itself with out sufficient information and suggestions to make certain it’s secure.

So I count on the adoption of self-driving vehicles will probably be sluggish for regulatory causes irrespective of how good the tech is. It should solely be adopted on highways and well-known routes at first (like between airports for instance) and broaden from there. A repute for sluggish and regular company strategies appears extra applicable than the considerably reckless and brash fashion of an Elon Musk.

Holdings Disclosure

Neither I nor anybody else related to this web site has a place in VWAGY or plans to provoke any positions throughout the 72 hours of this publication.

I wrote this text myself, and it expresses my very own private views and opinions. I’m not receiving compensation from, nor do I’ve a enterprise relationship with any firm whose inventory is talked about on this article.

Authorized Disclaimer

Not one of the writers or contributors of FinMasters are registered funding advisors, brokers/sellers, securities brokers, or monetary planners. This text is being offered for informational and academic functions solely and on the situation that it’s going to not type a major foundation for any funding determination.

The views about corporations and their securities expressed on this article mirror the private opinions of the person analyst. They don’t characterize the opinions of Vertigo Studio SA (publishers of FinMasters) on whether or not to purchase, promote or maintain shares of any specific inventory.

Not one of the data in our articles is meant as funding recommendation, as a suggestion or solicitation of a suggestion to purchase or promote, or as a advice, endorsement, or sponsorship of any safety, firm, or fund. The knowledge is basic in nature and isn’t particular to you. 

Vertigo Studio SA shouldn’t be accountable and can’t be held chargeable for any funding determination made by you. Earlier than utilizing any article’s data to make an funding determination, it is best to search the recommendation of a professional and registered securities skilled and undertake your personal due diligence.

We didn’t obtain compensation from any corporations whose inventory is talked about right here. No a part of the author’s compensation was, is, or will probably be immediately or not directly, associated to the particular suggestions or views expressed on this article.



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