The decision by Swedish carmaker Volvo to equip all its cars with electric engines by 2019 demonstrates the rapid change seen in the international automotive industry, Manfred Kriener writes in a commentary for Tageszeitung (taz). “Volvo has understood,” he says, arguing that China’s planned mandatory e-car quota for all carmakers triggered the Swedish brand’s decision. The company is owned by Chinese car conglomerate Geely. China’s quota “has done more than all support programmes and premium payments ever did", he says. German carmakers were eager to pledge a similar shift to electric mobility, but those “all pointed at the next decade", Kriener writes. Daimler and VW were particularly slow to take concrete steps, and instead retrofitted existing combustion engines, he says.
Read the commentary in German here.
See the CLEW dossier The Energiewende and German carmakers for background.