German cities increasingly relying on electric cars for municipal vehicle fleets
Clean Energy Wire
One out of five cars in Germany's municipal vehicle fleets is now electric, according to a survey conducted by clean mobility think tank Agora Verkehrswende, which recommends that cities purchase only e-autos from 2025 onwards. The current 20 percent share of e-vehicles in municipal fleets is significantly higher than currently seen at the federal level or in company fleets, where the proportion of purely battery-electric and plug-in hybrids is only 1.8 and 8.6 percent, respectively, Agora Verkehrswende states. The Berlin-based thinktank surveyed 199 German cities with a total of 4,687 cars. So far, however, only 13 percent of cities have set clear targets for the electrification of their vehicle fleets.
"Municipalities can further expand their pioneering role in the switch to electromobility," says Agora Verkehrswende executive director Christian Hochfeld. “A good goal would be to only procure electric vehicles from 2025 onwards. If city administrations commit to this goal and align their planning and processes accordingly, they can send a clear signal for electromobility and climate protection. But they also need the support of the federal and state governments, especially in terms of financing, expanding the charging infrastructure and providing reliable framework conditions."
The electrification of municipal car fleets is most advanced in the states of North Rhine-Westphalia, Rhineland-Palatinate and Baden-Württemberg, where the proportion of e-cars is already around 25 percent. Climate protection proponents have taken Germany’s political elite to task for continuing to employ controversial plug-in hybrids. At the same time, interest in electric cars among the German public is growing rapidly, according to a recent survey by the Technical Inspection Authority (TÜV).