As documented here, German carmakers mostly talk about EVs, but build very few. Volkswagen’s Christian Klingler even said that customers don’t want EVs, only governments do. He’s sure right about the government part. The German government prods its carmakers to get on with the building of EVs. Germany’s Economy Minister Brüderle (the very same that said no to Opel help) demanded “more tempo” in the EV department. The German government wants to see a million EVs by 2020. The government is worried that the Germans are missing the (electric) train. Just like the automakers, the government is a lot of talk, and little action.
“We have invented the car around here,” said Brüderle. He doesn’t want that leadership go to countries like China, Japan, Korea, the U.S., or, oh mein Gott, even France. What’s the answer of the German industry? Show us the money, then we talk. They think a decent research program costs $5b, and they want the government to pay most of that. The government is thinking about its share. Most of all, the automakers want inducements to go to buyers of EVs. Just like in the aforementioned countries. “No way” is Brüderle’s answer. He wants to “leave the electromobility to the market forces.” The industry thinks EVs are a tough sell with inducements. Without, they are unsalable.
According to the German rule “wenn man nicht mehr weiter weiss, gründet man nen Arbeitskreis” (if you see no way out, start a committee), the Germans started the Nationale Plattform Elektromobilität (NPE), which did what Germans do best: The developed a norm for EVs. Well, at least the roadmap for a norm, as Automobilwoche [sub] reports. For ar real standard, they need a real budget. This is going nowhere fast.