The Audi bang for the burners from 2026 hit like a bomb. The smoke column of this communication explosion still stands over Auto-Deutschland. Now VW has followed suit. BMW is approaching the topic more carefully and wants to take customer requests into account. All in all, the VDA seems to be stabbing the VDA in the back, which started the anti-auto industry avalanche with the big bang "diesel fraud". Now the VW group seems to overtake even the toughest demands of the Greens, more precisely: to want to undermine them.
“The end of the internal combustion engine is only foreseeable in Europe; internal combustion engines will be in demand and sold in third world markets for the next 50 years,” an Audi developer tells us. It could be that these markets will record even higher sales figures than they have ever been achieved in Europe. Underdeveloped countries have a lot of catching up to do. "And we cannot withhold from these countries what we have enjoyed in the western world for decades: unprecedented individual mobility with highly developed technology."
No more technology openness?
On June 17, VDA President Hildegard Müller argued logically and plausibly: “The EU Commission's considerations to reduce the so-called fleet limit values for new vehicles to zero from 2035 would in fact force the European automotive industry to only use battery-electric vehicles to bring to market. That would not only be the end of the internal combustion engine, but also the end of the plug-in hybrid and is the opposite of the openness to technology that the Commission and its Vice-President Timmermans have always advocated. The restriction of the technologies to a single drive option within such a short period of time is questionable and, moreover, does not take into account the interests of consumers in any way. "
VDA President Hildegard Müller criticizes the EU Commission
The VDA boss clearly criticizes the Commission's ignorance of the loss of 215.000 jobs: “Just to achieve the Commission's previous goals, charging points are needed in all regions of Europe. This is not in sight. However, it is precisely this part of the deal that the Commission does not want to deliver. Here the Commission is called upon to ensure that the establishment of the charging infrastructure is finally taken seriously in all member states. "
Unlike Audi, BMW continues to rely on technological openness and is also working with technology leader Toyota on a hydrogen-powered fuel cell to generate electricity on board electric cars. BMW considers a smoother transition to e-mobility to be more productive and clearly relies on the decision-making authority of the customers.
Toyota is on the market with the Hydrogen Mirai (Japanese for future) and is already offering the second generation - a stylish coupé - in homeopathic form in Europe too.
Audi dealers are upset
The surprisingly announced Audi departure from the combustion engine has caused unrest in the entire sales organization. The owner of an Audi dealership is "angry". He asks himself: “What should I now say to a customer who still wants a combustion engine? That he should switch to an e-tron right away? I can't even recommend a plug-in hybrid to him without blushing. We have to earn the money with cars that Mr. Duesmann and Mr. Diess have vilified as being only suitable for museums. Individual customers have clearly criticized this. I don't think that Duesmann's quick shot will lead to us selling more combustion engines in the next few years because customers still want one. "The dealer doesn't even see the breakthrough of the battery-powered vehicle in the long term and says:" We would have a longer transition preferred, where the customers themselves could have decided between combustion and e-mobiles until the charging infrastructure is in place and the electricity is genuinely regenerative. ”The CO2 balance with battery cars is still a milkmaid bill, because the electricity is still available is also produced with fossil fuels.
Internal combustion engines will be sold for decades
However, it is not as abrupt as the end of the combustion engine seems to come. Audi-Duesmann has also hinted that Audi's internal combustion engine production will continue in China. The large markets in the emerging third world will continue to want premium combustion-engine vehicles. “Nobody”, according to an Audi developer, “can expect that a charging infrastructure for battery cars will be available in the countries of Africa and India in South America in the next fifty years. Our high-tech combustion engines will still be in great demand and sold there. On the world climate or on the global CO2-Emissions will not change with the end of combustion in Europe and perhaps in the USA. "