German carmakers pledge to invest €60bn in electric and self-driving technology
The president of the German Association of the Automotive Industry has revealed German carmakers will invest heavily in electric cars and automation over the next three years in an effort to meet new European regulations
On March 2, ahead of the Geneva International Motor Show, the head of the German Association of the Automotive Industry (VDA) promised German carmakers would invest €60m ($68.03m) in electric cars and automation technology over the next three years. It’s a signal that electric vehicles are to dominate the prestigious Swiss auto show this month.
“We will invest over €40bn [$45.4bn] in electric mobility during the next three years, and another €18bn [$20.4bn] will be invested in digitisation and connected and automated driving,” read a statement from VDA President Bernhard Mattes.
As mounting evidence points towards the damaging environmental impact of the carbon emissions produced by petrol and diesel-fuelled vehicles, manufacturers are set to face stricter guidelines. “The ramp-up of electric mobility is coming in Europe; without it, the EU’s [carbon dioxide] targets cannot be achieved by 2030,” Mattes said.
New European regulations are set to be phased in next year, compelling car manufacturers to significantly reduce their carbon emissions
New European regulations are set to be phased in next year, compelling firms to significantly reduce their carbon emissions – those infringing on the rules are likely to face hefty fines. The regulations will be applied as an average measure across a company’s whole fleet, meaning the law is unlikely to significantly impact carmakers possessing lines of low or zero-emissions cars.
German auto firms have led the way in the transition to a more sustainable model, with the number of electric models produced by Volkswagen, Daimler and BMW set to reach around 100 in the next three years. Daimler and BMW have also agreed to cooperate on self-driving vehicles, while Volkswagen has teamed up with American manufacturer Ford.
As worldwide sales have slumped, various automobile manufacturers have struggled to turn a profit. Consequently, with tighter margins and companies spending less, the influence of car shows has begun to subside. However, this year’s Geneva International Motor Show provides a platform for the most forward-thinking firms to showcase their new technology.