German Chancellor Merkel Sticks to Target of 1 Million Electric Vehicles on Roads by 2020

4 years ago by Eric Loveday 7

Here's One of Those EVs on the Road

Here’s One of Those EVs on the Road

German “angst” is holding back adoption of electric vehicles there, remarked BMW CEO Norbert Reithofer a couple of weeks ago.

The Nissan LEAF Sells for a Few Ticks Below $50,000 in Germany

The Nissan LEAF Sells for a Few Ticks Below $49,000 in Germany

But German Chancellor Angela Merkel doesn’t seem to care about that pent up angst.

Merkel, just days ago, reaffirmed the German target of one million plug-in vehicles on the nation’s roads by the end of 2020.

“You have a chancellor who believes in electromobility.”

Were the words of Merkel at a conference held to promote electric vehicle technology.

Germany has a long ways to go.

In 2012, less than 3,000 electric vehicles were sold in Germany, while total automotive sales there exceeded 3 million units.

How will Germany hit that target?  Our guess is that the one million mark is beyond reach by 2020, but Germany does plans to invest some $15.5 billion over the next 4 years to promote alternative-fuel technology, which is a start.

However, Germany’s Minister of Economy, Philipp Roesler, refuses to subsidize the purchase of electric vehicles to artificially raise demand.

Without subsidies though, a survey by German motoring club ADAC shows that few would be willing to buy an electric vehicle.  The survey results  show that almost half would be unwilling to pay even a penny more for an electric vehicle.

These Are Too Expensive to Produce, Says a GM Exec

These Are Too Expensive to Produce, Says a GM Exec

Automaker’s may be losing interest in selling plug-in vehicles in Germany, too.  Take, for example, the words of Karl-Thomas Neumann, chief executive of General Motors’ Opel division:

“We actually lose money with each Ampera we sell, because the technology is too expensive.”

Again, the lack of subsidies means that Opel has to price the Ampera in an area (42,900 euro or $55,474 US) where at least a few buyers might snatch one up.  Subsidies would allow Opel to slightly raise the price of the Ampera and possibly profit a bit from each sale.

We’re thinking Germany will need to sign into law some sort of subsidy program, at least for the next few years, if it’s to truly aim for that 1 million target.

Source: Reuters

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7 responses to "German Chancellor Merkel Sticks to Target of 1 Million Electric Vehicles on Roads by 2020"

  1. David Murray says:

    I would have really thought Germany would have been at the forefront of the EV revolution.. It is surprising to me that it is not.

  2. zilm says:

    Let me calculate
    Germany have 0.47Euro eco tax for Diesel (per litre) and 0.65Euros for Petrol
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fuel_tax#Germany
    They spent 454000 barrels of gasoline/day and 674000 of diesel/day
    http://www.iea.org/publications/freepublications/publication/GermanyOSS.pdf
    So about $45 744 222/day for gasoline and $49 104 895/day for diesel, totally about $34,6b/year
    This does not include any eco-tax for industry. I wonder where do they spend these money.

  3. Suprise Cat says:

    The Leaf costs 33900 Euro in Germany. (New model will start at 29000 € next month). That’s not 49000 $.

  4. GeorgeS says:

    The Germans are in the middle of a great transformation away from Nuclear power and so electricity is expensive there. In a stupid knee jerk reaction they decided to close their Nukes after Fukushima. I wish them the best of luck, but I think they are making a big mistake. I’d have a Nuke as my neighbor any day over a fossil fuel plant. I’m not afraid. We have Palo Verde Nuclear plant here in my backyard, we have good rates, and we have a zero pollution and totally clean air.

    1. Priusmaniac says:

      Actually zero pollution and totally clean air until…

      I am not against nuclear energy but uranium based systems are obsolete and should at least be replaced by Thorium based systems that are protected against run away reactions and perhaps even better by fusion reactors that have been underfinanced for years. By the way fusion starts to look like the Panama Canal, it won’t be completed until the military take over and make it happen.

  5. GeorgeS says:

    article quote:
    “Automaker’s may be losing interest in selling plug-in vehicles in Germany, too. Take, for example, the words of Karl-Thomas Neumann, chief executive of General Motors’ Opel division:”

    Sounds like Karl-Thomas needs his ass fired.

  6. Bennyd says:

    It looks like BMW has it’s sights on the American and Chinese markets. German engineering will benefit a majority of the global population.