German transport minister calls for more attractive car swap offers from automakers
In an interview with the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung’s Kerstin Schwenn, German minister of transport Andreas Scheuer, a member of the conservative CSU party, said the retrofitting of millions of diesel cars to make them cleaner and reduce emissions would not make sense and instead called for German automakers to improve scrappage programmes. While retrofitting some vehicles and municipal buses with software updates has proven effective, Scheuer said he still had concerns about proposed hardware retrofits and instead called on automakers to offer more attractive trade-in deals for car owners facing diesel bans in German cities. Commenting on Scheuer’s interview, environment minister Svenja Schulze, of the left-of-centre SPD, reiterated her call for hardware upgrades. “For months now, I have been promoting technical retrofits at the manufacturers' expense, and more and more allies have joined in this demand. Technical retrofits are the best and most just way out of the diesel crisis. They make the air cleaner and they help avoid driving bans and regain confidence in diesel.” According to the transport ministry, some 1.3 million cars in Germany could be affected by driving bans on older diesel cars, Die Welt reported.
Read the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung article in German here (behind paywall).
Read the environment ministry statement in German here.
Read the Die Welt article here.
Get background on the diesel story in the CLEW factsheet "Dieselgate" - a timeline of Germany's car emissions fraud scandal.