Green Germany, which is economically disassembling itself, can even count on the help of the boardrooms of the automotive industry.
The green ban strategy has led to a social division in Germany and an economic downturn. "Obviously, the Germans have a talent for cheering the wrong prophet and running after them," says Horst Roosen, board member of the UTR | Umwelt | Technik | Recht | eV
“Germany owes its prosperity mainly to the automotive industry,” recalls Roosen. Germany's automotive industry (still) delivers top-class vehicles, suitable for long journeys, luxurious and equipped with the highest level of automotive intelligence. “The high-tech highlight of traditional combustion culture leaves no doubt that, despite all prophecies of doom, the diesel actually still has its best days ahead of it.
Read the article by Holger Douglas here
Mercedes wants to continue on green - and is obviously opting for subsidies.
Technical superiority and radiance of a brand, combined with fascination for progress: that was the promise of Mercedes. In the future you should get from A to B like a Dacia, but in green. The original mother of the car gives up and an old master of technology explains why.
The auto industry is heading for the disaster. That's what one of the last "engine popes" says, Fritz Indra. Acting Daimler boss Källenius, on the other hand, joins the ideologues. There is no better way to get to the point of the opposing positions that prevail in the auto industry.
»A realization from the time when the world stands still is:
Individual mobility is and will remain a valuable asset, «wrote the Daimler boss in a guest post for FAS. After all, he is committed to something like individual mobility: »The car is more than a protected space. It gives us the independence to move independently from A to B at any time. And what's even more important right now: the certainty that helpers come to the needy and that goods go to supermarkets. «
Why Mercedes when a Dacia drives too?
Of course he is right. However, a vehicle without an expensive star is also suitable, how about an inexpensive Dacia? It fulfills each of the needs mentioned. So why flip five or ten times? Källenius' predecessors might have found answers for what a Mercedes is needed for, except for balancing a large pack of toilet paper from A to B without a breathing mask. So where does the luxury brand go?
A "lane change" is necessary, however, he says. The word "decarbonization" is as quick as his lips as the zealous Chancellor and ardent participants in a green party conference: "This change of lane is primarily linked to two issues: decarbonization and digitization. Success in digitization decides the future of many companies, success in decarbonization decides the future of our planet. «A remarkable finding that unfortunately does not answer the question: Why a Mercedes? Källenius has an answer.
Climate protection pays off "in the long term".
In plain language: Källenius no longer has to justify the horrendous losses for this within his term of office. He unabashedly affirmed the Paris climate agreement: »This message is important to me: we stand by the agreed CO2 targets. The fight against the pandemic must not be an excuse to fight climate change. Yes, financial resources are currently scarcer than ever. And yes, we first have to spend a lot of money on decarbonization. «
Everything is good and green and obedient and collected for it.
Daimler emphasizes how well the traditional car manufacturer will build its electric cars in the future, wants to be in the front line when politics distributes plasticine to the obedient companies and is already planning to finance its missing earnings with climate war bonds.
»In this sense, we want to use financing instruments such as“ green bonds ”in the future. They offer us new opportunities to finance the high future investments for CO2-neutral technologies. And at the same time, they offer environmentally-oriented investors the opportunity to directly participate in our sustainability projects. A win-win situation. «
Green bonds differ from conventional bonds in the interest rate.
The intent is clear: Because Daimler fears that it will no longer be able to earn the cost of capital, subsidized financing is used, known as “green bonds”. Not only that shows the actual weakness of the group, which can name the value of its products as little as its independence from state aid: »We also support the EU's Green Deal. In return, politicians can support this lane change by expanding the charging infrastructure as quickly as possible. The already agreed CO2 pricing and the environmental bonus for electric vehicles and plug-in hybrids also have a positive steering effect. «
So it should be expensive for taxpayers in the future if someone can afford a Mercedes.
Källenius, who took master's courses in "International Management" and "Finance and Accounting", is neither a technician nor a scientist, nor is he a man who knows something about sales, or even about the product. He is a second-row man that you need, of course, no company runs without accounting. But at the top? Can you no longer find anyone in the entire Daimler group who takes him aside and draws attention to the consequences? It goes without saying that the FAS no longer asks such questions. That would be too much economy for a Sunday.
But is that really the trail to the future?
In contrast to him, one of the old masters of automotive engineering warns of the coming catastrophe into which the auto industry is heading. Fritz Indra is a graduate engineer and engine developer, was responsible for technological developments at BMW, Audi and Opel for a long time and says loud and clear: »Industry is heading for a catastrophe.«
In interviews, Indra repeatedly brings the physical and technical conditions in the car industry into play. Not surprisingly, they are diametrically opposed to green world saving ideas.
The modern internal combustion engine optimally converts the enormous amount of energy contained in petroleum into a steady forward movement. Chemical energy is transformed into mechanical. Indra does not see an end to the flagpole in this process. The efficiency could still be increased - thus the better use of energy and thus the environmental friendliness.
It is actually surprising that an oddly elaborate construction with a piston, crankshaft and valve mechanism that is more than 100 years old is still the best source of power available. The apparently absurd machinery with pistons moving up and down and their masses, which have to be accelerated and decelerated again, surprisingly withstood all competing attempts.
Why a mistake becomes expensive
Incidentally, the Wankel engine was also a mistake for Indra, because the combustion chamber had to be moved again and again and new surfaces had to be heated. That costs energy and therefore fuel. The engine swallowed a lot of fuel accordingly.
Indra, of course, knows what the famous French physicist and engineer Nicolas Léonard Sadi had already written in his "Reflections on the Moving Power of Fire and the Machines Suitable for Developing It" in the early 19th century. He recognized that a mechanical force can be generated wherever there is a temperature difference and also described how a machine with a significantly higher degree of efficiency has to be designed in order to extract significantly more mechanical energy from the fuel than before.
This temperature difference only has to be driven higher and higher. Indra: »You have to be able to highly compress an efficient engine; it needs a precisely defined, compact combustion chamber in order to be able to get the best efficiency out of the fuel.«
Anyone who understands this would never come up with the idea of banning cars with internal combustion engines and prescribing electric cars as an alternative.
He also tells the anecdote of how Mercedes-Benz once devoted himself to the Wankel engine under the developer Wolf-Dieter Bensinger. Indra remembers: »I experienced this phase at the time as a university student, I was allowed to design the V-belt for one of these engines. At that time, Bensinger was firmly convinced that the Wankel engine would prevail and therefore no longer developed the reciprocating engine at all. This opened a huge gap to BMW that could not be closed for many years. Because BMW didn't think much of the Wankel and diligently developed the reciprocating engine. «
This shows the far-reaching consequences of wrong strategic technical decisions.
No other source of mobility is in sight yet. The electric motor fails when it comes to storing the necessary amount of energy. The batteries are very limited. Nature sets narrow limits. Energy is best stored chemically, not electrically.
»I think the cremator will live for a very long time because it best meets people's desire for completely free, independent transportation. Anyone can afford a car with a combustion engine, they have all become very economical and clean, and so far all actions to remove him from the throne have fizzled out. «
But there should no longer be a car that everyone has been able to afford since Henry Ford and his cost-reducing assembly line production.
The free, inexpensive movement should be restricted if left and green ideologues are concerned. You don't have to be able to get everywhere anymore, they say.
It becomes very worrying if even the boss of a car manufacturer blows uncritically into the horn of those who long for the end of individual mobility.
Perhaps he will familiarize himself with what Indra said. A company in the auto industry that has such CEOs no longer needs competition.
Källenius himself no longer has to worry about financial matters personally. The Daimler workforce, however, is growing.