Deutsche Welle. German Chancellor Angela Merkel and her ministers are finalizing a plan to provide financial incentives starting in 2012 to support the production and sale of 100,000 electric cars annually. The plan envisages around one million electric cars on German roads by 2020.
At present, around 500 million euros ($704 million) have been earmarked for research and development. Progress would determine whether more funding would be made available. Specifics on the finances are to be discussed by the German cabinet in the next legislature period in the fall.
“The program is aimed at having a positive impact on investment decisions, give producers security and support the sale of electric cars,” according to a copy of the plan released to news media.
Speaking on the ARD news program Tagesschau, German environment minister Sigmar Gabriel said that the technology for efficient and safe electric cars would not be in place until 2011 at the earliest. Batteries would have to become safer and smaller, he said, while safety issues still had to be clarified and the range the cars could travel on a single charge must be increased.
As of 2006, Germany had a passenger car parc of 46.6 million units, according to the European Automobile Manufacturers’s Association. Over the last 10 years, Germany has averaged 3.33 million new passenger vehicle registrations annually (with 2008 being the lowest, with 3.090 million new registrations. At those figures, the 100,000 EVs per year would represent about 3% of new vehicle sales, with a parc representation in 2020 of about 2%.