The German Federal Transport Minister Andreas Scheuer wants to boost electric car sales by raising the ‘Environmental Bonus’ for purely electric cars from currently 2000 to 4000 euros by 2020. The measure would only apply to small battery electric or fuel cell cars with a purchase price of no more than 30,000 euros.
Cars in the price range between 30,000 and 60,000 euros will also get an increase in governmental support, with a much smaller raise from 2000 euros to 2500 euros. For light commercial vehicles and taxis the governmental support is expected to be even higher. An electric taxi may be eligible for subventions of up to 8000 euro in total – depending also on whether the car industry also increases their contribution. Currently, the Environmental Bonus is made up of two parts: one half financed by the government, the other half contributed by the car industry.
Until now in Germany, smaller electric cars have found far fewer buyers than larger cars with both higher prices and energy usage. Now both Daimler’s new boss, Ola Köllenius, and the head of Volkswagen, Herbert Diess, have both spoken in favour of new electric models for a broader market.
On the governmental side of things, Scheuer’s proposal has found support among colleagues. The Minister for Economic Affairs, Peter Altmaier, has already signalled his approval of the measure, as has his colleague, the Federal Minister of Finance, Olaf Scholz.
The move would be a long-sought response after much criticism directed at the conservative German federal government for failing to make any impression on CO2 emissions in the transport sector at all: CO2 emissions in the German transport sector have basically remained unchanged since 1990. So far the German government has also failed to make a dent in their own announced goal of reducing CO2 emissions by 40 per cent by 2030. To now reach this goal is going to take a big turn around in the effectivity of measures so far.
spiegel.de (in German)