The Startling Debacle Of Germany’s Electric Cars …Auto Industry Faces Demise In 10 Years

NOTE: I was in Berlin the whole weekend and just got back. A bit tired, and so no new post today.

The skeptic European Institute for Climate and Energy (EIKE) here brings our attention to a documentary on electric cars by German flagship ARD public television broadcast recently

The news on the electric car situation in Germany does not look good. As it turns out that the government and industry are not really that serious about it, despite all the lofty green rhetoric.

In fact the ARD reports that Daimler has even stopped production of electric cars so that the production line could instead be used to produce regular internal combustion engine cars (ICEs) for deliveries to China and USA. So much for Daimler CEO’s pledge to “become a leader in electric cars.” In fact all German automotive CEOs posture as leaders in electric cars, but the reality is different.

So few cars sold in Germany

ARD wonders why so few electric cars are sold in Germany, despite test drivers finding them quite pleasant to drive – to a certain point. In fact ARD calls Germany e-car sales figures a “a catastrophe”, as only 32,000 electric cars have been registered so far. The target is 1 million by 2020, something that analysts now call “a fairy tale”. The German auto industry puts the blame squarely on the government.

But whose fault is it really for the terrible electric car sales in Germany? ARD decided to look into the topic more deeply and uncovered a number of reasons. They discover that the German automakers have in fact very little interest in pursuing electric cars, nor does the German government.

Low range

Despite claiming that cars can go 190 km on a full charge, ARD shows in fact that the real number for BMW e-cars is only about 120 km. And if the driver sets the car to not exceed the economical 90 km/hr speed and to not to use air conditioning, the range jumps only to 124 km. “A bit depressing,” says the test driver.

Exorbitant cost

Moreover, the BMW i3 test vehicle featured by ARD has a sticker price of a whopping 35,000 euros ($37,000), “about one third more than a comparable petrol engine car,” says the ARD. “Way overpriced,” says the test driver. The question is why is the BMW i3 so expensive even though the ARD reports that the production cost of the lightweight vehicle is relatively low? The answer according to ARD is that the automotive companies want it that way. This explains why BMW sold only a bit over 16,000 cars worldwide last year.

No rush to electric cars

The truth is that the German automakers are putting the brakes on electric cars. There’s a very good reason for that, the ARD discovered. German automakers are in no rush to shift to electric cars because they fear such a move “would only devalue their ICE technology,” says automotive analyst Prof. Stefan Bratzel. “It is irrational for them to shift far into the electric sector.”

eGolf is only an optional variant

Also investigated is an eGolf car by VW. Also here the test driver is impressed by the overall feel of the electric car, but the price is also exorbitant at 35,000 euros — some 15,000 euros more than the comparable petrol version vehicle.

The ARD asks why eGolfs have the exact same look as the conventional Golfs, and so buyers are unable to show and make the statement that they are concerned about protecting the environment. Here the answer lies in the costs surrounding production, and parts sharing among models. The eGolf shares the exact same platform as the other ICE Golf models.

e-cars still remain in question

VW CEO Martin Winterkorn adds: “Currently everything is open when it comes to where the path of the various drives systems.” In summary: the future of e-cars, at least for Winterkorn, still remains in question. The ARD is taken aback by Winterkorn’s comment. For VW, the real money remains in ICE cars and there is little incentive to go electric.

German electric car battery plant shuttered

Another sign that electric cars are not being taken seriously by German automakers is the country’s only electric battery plant located near Dresden is slated to be shuttered. The ARD reports that the Evonik plant (owned by Daimler) will be closed by the end of the year (2016), citing that “it is not competitive” despite receiving a 30-million euro subsidy from the government! Today German automotive manufacturers must now rely solely on foreign battery suppliers, such as Samsung, Panasonic, or Tesla for their batteries. ARD in summary reports that Germany is all but out of the race when it comes to electric mobility technology.

Charging stations far too sparse

At the 21:00 mark of the documentary, the ARD switches the focus to more technical problems, namely the lack of charging stations in Berlin and elsewhere. The German television station shows that there are only a small handful in Berlin, making e-cars especially inconvenient and stressful to drive. In Amsterdam, Netherlands, on the other hand, charging stations can be found at almost every street corner, the ARD reports. Out in rural Germany, charging stations are virtually non-existent.

Exaggerated charging times

The ARD reports that the industry even exaggerates the battery charging time, as one test driver shows. Instead of the advertised 30 minutes needed for a “quick charge” in reality it takes 80 minutes. The “quick-charging” network in Germany is also a “catastrophe”, says Kurt Sigl, President of the Federal Association of Mobility.

Subsidies for show

Another peculiarity of the German automotive industry is that German automakers, despite making huge overall profits, are still receiving hundreds of millions in government (taxpayer) subsidies for e-mobility development. Even the charging station in front of BMW headquarters in Munich (27:52 mark) was paid for by a government subsidy to the tune of 900,000 euros!

So far German car producers have received hundreds of million in subsidies from the government, totally unnecessary experts say. There is little to show for it.

Cheating and fudging to meet new CO2 emissions standards

The German automotive industry faces yet another problem: their car fleets will have to meet strict EU CO2 emissions standards by 2020. By then the average car will be allowed to emit only 95 g of CO2 per km. Analysts say German carmakers will have to vastly expand the share of electric cars sold to 20%, an increase of 2000% in 7 years. Failure to meet the standards could mean billions in fines.

German government supports emissions cheating!

But the ARD explains that German automakers plan to cheat their way past the new standards by installing “hybrid” engines and through (legal) fudging during fuel emissions tests. Moreover, leading automobile and truck manufacturers have banned together under the ACEA automotive manufacturers lobby association with the aim of exerting pressure on the regulatory agencies to go easy – and of course with the full support of the German government. The government (unconvincingly) denies this before the ARD camera.

Under the bottom line: The new CO2 standards will be met solely by manipulation and test trickery, and hardly through cleaner engines.

Again the German auto industry and the government, despite all the green talk, are in fact not at all serious about moving away from ICEs and high-end luxury cars, where they are leaders, and over to competing in the ferocious, low-profit e-car sector. One huge juggernaut is that electric cars will be soon be mass-produced in China and sold very cheaply – even from merchandise stores, where they are expected to be snapped up like refrigerators. Electric cars thus threaten to end the huge German car industry, possibly in the matter of a decade.

Titanic clash between the German economic backbone and climatism

It’s clear that Germany ditching the ICE spells the end of a bulk of its mighty ICE auto industry, the very backbone of the country’s — economy which employs directly and indirectly 1 of every 6 German worker. What is coming is the titanic clash between climatism and the fundamental economic interests of the German nation. To save itself, Germany will need to show that efficient ICE’s are not bad for the climate, and that the science of climate change was faulty, and that their cars are in fact far superior to electric carts and do not damage the climate as claimed.

There’s no way that the bulk of the German car industry will be able to compete in the electric sector. Solar technology has shown us that with tens of thousands of German solar jobs getting recently annihilated by cheap Chinese manufacturers.

Unless the climate science nonsense and hysteria get put to rest, Germany risks seeing its energy and automotive sectors collapse.


105 responses to “The Startling Debacle Of Germany’s Electric Cars …Auto Industry Faces Demise In 10 Years”

  1. Doug Proctor

    Fortunately – or unfortunately – all that is needed to end the problems described here is one election.

    Which tells us something: CAGW is a purported, not perceived disaster. The lives of this generation of Germans wouldn’t change a bit if the CO2 rules disappeared – except taxes would be lower. It’s not like ignoring a massing of Russian tanks on the border.

    CAGW at this point is a crisis of the intellect, not the body. If you stop thinking about it, it really does go away for decades – or, I suspect, forever.

  2. Indur Goklany

    Yet another reason might be that most charging is probably going to be done in residences at night. But as readers of this blog know, because of Energiewende, residential energy prices are high and likely to get higher. Future car buyers are probably aware of that even if politicians aren’t. Call that poetic justice — or being hoist on your own petard.

  3. Stephen Richards

    Hyundai are developing Fuel cell electric and have a new cell on the market in 2018 which will be light and very much more efficient, they claim

    1. DirkH

      Yeah well BMW boasts they’ll start selling fuel cell vehicles in 2021.
      I have not heard anything about how they will fix the temperature problem though. The membranes get destroyed when they fall dry or freeze. Must always stay wet.

      1. DirkH

        Also, I have no idea how they’ll fix the H2 pressure tank steel brittleness and leakage problem.

        1. SebastianH

          Perhaps you are not aware that fuel cell cars already exist from other manufacturers? How did they solve the problem of storing H2? Toyota uses plastic to seal the tanks and no steel at all (

          I’d think the main problem would be having a full H2 tank under 10000 psi of pressure and parking your car in the sun. If the H2 heats from 293K to 353 K the pressure would rise to 12050 psi. Either the H2 tank can withstand this pressure or you’d need some valves to release pressure.

          1. AndyG55

            I bet Sebastien doesn’t own an electric car..

            An electric push-bike… maybe.

            Come on Seb/Sob, how’s your petrol fuelled car going ?

          2. SebastianH

            I admire your creative way to switch the topic and insult people. You are the definition of a troll, sir! 😉

          3. DirkH

            Sebastian, I am fully aware that there were fuel cell prototypes – which LEAKED, had the ususal steel pressure tanks that need to be replaced regularly at such a cost that it totals the car; can’t be parked in closed surroundings.

            You link to the car maker who says “ARE H2 Tanke Safe – the Short Answer : PROBABLY YES” – on his own page. I would say that as well if I wanted to sell the product.

            You really do want to believe in the superiority of fuel cell cars, I have no idea why. If you want to store high density chemical energy, using liquid hydrocarbons is a tried and tested simple solution, so all that H2 stuff is the result of a requirement analysis under the overarching condition of constant subsidation : i.e. a government-enforced solution, not a technical solution.

    2. Kevin

      And where will the Hydrogen come from?

      1. Akatsukami

        On-demand rectification of natural gas. The dirty little secret is what becomes of the *gasp*choke*CARBON!!!

    3. Les Francis

      Daimler Benz have given up on fuel cells as well as questioning the viability of electric.

      Here’s an article :

  4. DirkH

    “The question is why is the BMW i3 so expensive even though the ARD reports that the production cost of the lightweight vehicle is relatively low? The answer according to ARD is that the automotive companies want it that way. ”

    Yeah right, a Marxist state TV apparatchik now is an expert in the calculation of unit costs in industry. That also explains why the Cuban economy dominates the world.

    1. DirkH

      BTW the BMW i3 has all kinds of parts sourced from renewable stuff like Bamboo instead of plastic here and there in the interior. It caters to the ultra rich Green (state) bureaucrat and virtue signalling company. It’s an SJW car.

      1. toorightmate

        Good idea, Germany has abundant bamboo forests.

      2. Bernd Felsche

        BMW’s i3 presents a great many life-cycle headaches.

        The carbon fibre presents special difficulties in wrecking after crash damage. (Notably potential damage to lungs from carbon fibre fragments/dust.) Crash damage that affects the main vehicle structure is essentially unrepairable as re-bonding cannot be as good as the original bonding. Whereas a steel (sometimes even aluminium) monocoque chassis can be straightened and then checked for cracks, sections welded in and heat treated to recover original strength and stiffness; all over-stress situations in carbon fibre are catastrophic.

        Not that that will stop people trying to patch the broken bits; but patches exhibit a different conformity even when bonded strongly enough for the stresses. But the strains (deflections) will be different; especially if the stresses are transferred via a bonded patch between “good” sections of carbon fibre; where the stresses have to pass through a more flexible resin to the quite rigid carbon fibre sections. The result is that the chassis will flex differently after repair than before the crash.

  5. DirkH

    “What is coming is the titanic clash between climatism and the fundamental economic interests of the German nation. ”

    Well Warmunism just had its spine broken by the US election so I wonder what kind of fight that will be.

  6. Mikky

    Brilliant, to meet “green” regulations many cars sold will simply burn more fuel in order to transport the weight of an UNUSED battery and electric motor.

  7. Boyfromtottenham

    So will the German car industry now side with president Trump to become CAGW ‘deniers’ , hoping that this will stop Chinese low-cost EVs from destroying their ICE based profit machine? Oh, the irony!

    1. sod

      No. German car industry better get their acts together or China will simply destroy them.

      It is again the Greens which are pushing car manufacturers towards progress against their own will. Wel, they have nothing to fear, as a bancruptcy would just lead to another government bailout….

      1. DirkH

        “No. German car industry better get their acts together or China will simply destroy them. ”

        Wait. Did I just hear you promoting the autocratic rule of a Communist Party to save the planet? I’m confused. What with the Smog in Beijing? Surely you can explain that.

      2. AndyG55

        I bet Sop doesn’t own an electric car,

        just like he doesn’t use more than a tiny fraction of non-renewable non-energy.

        ALWAYS the reliance on the fossil carbon industry…

        for EVERY aspect of it’s life. ! 🙂

        Right Sop….. 🙂

        I DARE you to divest of all aspects of your life that are dependant on fossil fuels.

        Come on Sop, how’s your petrol fuelled car going?

        How’s your coal fired electric heating going?

        How’s all the plastic you use in everyday life…??

  8. sod

    electric cars are doing alright.

    just read all the comments in the EIKE article.

    Their success will show in the next couple of years, even though car industry is fighting against their deployment.

    1. mwhite

      Why would the “car industry is fighting against their deployment.” They’ll build what their customers want.
      You have a nice VHS video collection I take it?

      1. sod

        “You have a nice VHS video collection I take it?”

        actually i do have one.

        “Why would the “car industry is fighting against their deployment.””

        because they made huge investments in gasoline and diesel cars. They want to make the transfer as late as possible.

        “They’ll build what their customers want.”

        No. A lot of car sellers are also doing car repairs. And they know, that selling electric cars will cut their future business big times.

        A friend of mine had a horrible experience trying to buy the BMW. Car seller was always trying to convince him to better buy a hybrid and was not willing to give any special offer beyond the 2000€ that car sellers have to offer on EVs (half of the 4000 scheme shared with the government).

        1. DirkH

          sod 22. January 2017 at 11:19 AM | Permalink | Reply
          ““You have a nice VHS video collection I take it?”
          actually i do have one.”

          Well, grandpa, now pray tell: How long did it take your grandkids to teach you how to use the Internet? Do you even know you’re on the Internet?
          You’ll love these guys.

          1. SebastianH

            And back to ad hominem attacks … So sad

          2. AndyG55

            Yes, you are so sad, Seb.

            Totally reliant on the fossil fuel industry for heat, food, transport.. and too pathetic to admit it.

          3. SebastianH

            You almost let it sound like being reliant on fossil fuels is a bad thing. Change of mind?

          4. DirkH

            If we ever ran out of hydrocarbons we could make them. You know that, Sebastian. We can make them now. One of the many tentacles of the subsidized warmunist industries is making them.

  9. crosspatch

    The worst problem with electric cars is repeat buyers. There are few of them. People who bought one are choosing not to buy another for any number of reasons.

    The problem of complete lack of resale value is another problem. Nobody wants to buy a used electric car or even a hybrid with a lot of miles on that battery. When they realize that their used hybrid likely has a negative resale value (is basically “e-waste” that will cost them money to dispose of) the notion of buying another fades quickly.

    1. sod

      “The worst problem with electric cars is repeat buyers. There are few of them. People who bought one are choosing not to buy another for any number of reasons. ”

      this is a serious point. Do you have any data?

      1. AndyG55

        Would you buy a USED electric car, sop ???

        How’s your SUV going !

        1. SebastianH

          Depends on the price … I would not buy cars with over 100000 km on their first engine … Only if they are offered really cheap 🙂

          1. DirkH

            Sebastian, have you ever bought a car? I doubt it because the literally LAST thing that dies in the ordinary commuter car is the ENGINE. That might surprise you but just go find car owners and ask them. There were some unfortunate crap cars in the 1970ies who had constantly dying engines, yes, that was the age when there was still experiments with Wankel motors.

            Now hurry to the wikipedia and find out what a WANKEL is, boy.

          2. SebastianH

            And another ad hominem attack … predictable. It’s not about the engine breaking down, but the car becoming worthless because a random – but vital – thing in the drive train breaks.

          3. AndyG55

            Or Sebastien could look in the mirror and replace the L with an R.

          4. AndyG55

            A coward’s answer… Massive evasion from Seb.

            I bet you don’t even own an EV, and certainly wouldn’t buy a second hand one.

            You would be a monumental fool if you did…. oh wait.. its Sebastian… so anything moronic is possible.

          5. SebastianH

            I’m glad you mentioned a mirror …

          6. DirkH

            Now it’s the drive train, no longer the motor?

          7. AndyG55

            “I’m glad you mentioned a mirror …”

            I’m sure you use it every day…

    2. Tim Crome

      There are many electric cars here in Norway with many very satisfied owners who are definitely repeat buyers. Could have something to do with the very high level of subsidy they receive compared to the very high duties and taxes on internal combustion engined cars!

      1. AndyG55

        And do you know where those subsidies are coming from ??

        Sales of GAS and OIL to other countries… 🙂

        That is what is so ridiculously and hilariously funny about citing Norway and its electric cars.

  10. John F. Hultquist

    Back when ICE autos had cranks in the front with which to get them going, and occasionally break an arm, electric cars were preferred by ladies. Darned if someone didn’t invent an electric starter, and the only reason for an electric car went away. A sad, sad, story.

  11. Asmilwho

    I always wonder why the greens never talk about where the battery material comes from, how it extracted, refined and processed to make batteries.

    Or what the lifetime of the batteries are. Or how the recycling works.

    In 2014 there were over 900 000 000 passenger cars worldwide. Let’s assume the green dream becomes reality and all of these cars become electric.

    At 500 Kg battery per car ( like the Nissan Leaf, if I remember correctly), that’s an awful lot of lithium compound

    Not to forget that the world population is supposed to go up by 40% by 2050, and all those new people will want their personal transportation too …

    1. sod

      “I always wonder why the greens never talk about where the battery material comes from, how it extracted, refined and processed to make batteries. ”

      actually we talk about this stuff. Batteries will be recycled.

      And the huge numbers you quote would be a good thing: all those batteries will provide grid backup.

      In the real world though, EVs will transform transportation in cities and we will need much less cars than you think we will.

      1. DirkH

        The Greens cherish these huge open pit mines that devour entire mountain ranges.

      2. AndyG55

        Poor sop, you have just proven you know nothing about chemistry or battery technology.

        But we knew that already.

      3. Adam Gallon

        “In the real world though, EVs will transform transportation in cities and we will need much less cars than you think we will ”

        that’s about the only sensible thing you’ve ever come out with.
        The use of electric cars in cities, for commutes, is about their only rational use.
        The other thing you’ve let lose, is one of their big drawbacks. With a “smart” grid, they’ll be used as grid backup. When the wind fails to blow & it’s a cold, dark morning, commuters will get into their cars & find next to no charge in the battery. Why? Because it’s been discharged to power their lights, heating, kettle, toaster, TV…..

        1. DirkH

          I suggest an emergency PLANET SAVING HOLIDAY in such cases. Everyone stays in bed. Maybe enforce this by switching all traffic lights permanently to red. Which is the favorite color of the Greens.

        2. Russ Wood

          Commuting. Well, that all depends where you are. Around the Johannesburg-Pretoria area, the average commute is now about 40 kilometers each way, with up to 40 minutes stationary. Now add the airconditioning load on to that – hot (30-38 degrees in summer) and cold (-2 to 5 degrees in winter – and yes, it DOES snow in Africa). Now, unless every single company parking place has a recharge point, I can’t see full electrics catching on. Actually, I wish that company PARKING PLACES caught on!

          1. Wookey

            Our company (in the UK) just built a new carpark, with ducting under every space, because they expect to provide charging for every space eventually. There are a few spaces done initially. No point doing them all at once as technology will change fast.

            So yes, lots of workplace charging seems likely.

    2. SebastianH

      There is less than 10 kg of Lithium in those 500 kg batteries. The rest is composed of other materials of which recycling has been demonstrated. However, you can give used car batteries a second Life as home storage batteries, etc …

      I wouldn’t worry too much about the batteries, I’d worry about the additional electricity and how it will be produced.

      1. DirkH

        “However, you can give used car batteries a second Life as home storage batteries”

        Great idea to get rid of non-recycleable hazardous waste, especially fire hazards containing acids. Any takers? USED BATTERIES FOR FREE!

        1. SebastianH

          There is no harzardous waste in Lithium-Ion batteries. They are in fact “landfill safe” (as least the US goverment declares them to be).

          Can you please elaborate what kind of acids those batteries would contain?

          1. AndyG55

            So you are saying we should landfill them..

            So much for recycling.. DOH !!!

          2. SebastianH

            No I’m not.

          3. DirkH

            Thermal runaway produces 500 centigrade hot gas mixture containing carbon monoxide and acids.
            That’s why a steel-plated “outgassing channel” is designed into casings for large Li Ion batteries – and a corresponding weak spot in the battery casing itself so you know where the battery will blow.
            At least that was the case for SAFT Li-Ion batteries used in Daimler hybrids;
            from what I have seen from TESLA Motors crash they seem to be happy to just let them go off like huge firecrackers so I don’t know if there are ANY safety guidelines in the USA at all for these things.

            And yeah, the first battery chemistry you just throw onto the normal household waste dump, yeah right. Let’s see how that’ll work out in Green EU.

            So behold, here’s the GREEN planet saving Electric car proponents who tell us, you can just throw these electric cars in the waste bin and it’s good for the planet, now that’s a sight to behold!!!

          4. AndyG55

            Store them for a rainy day.. recycling is difficult with Lithium batteries.

          5. SebastianH

            Again, I am not telling you to do that. The US goverment declared them landfill save, that doesn’t mean I want to throw electric cars in the waste bin.

            Here is a company which recycles batteries (Li-Ion): … they seem to be after the more valueable cobalt, nickel and copper, but they do mention the potential for lithium recovery if that concerns you.

  12. Tim Sims

    Two things. Firstly I personally think that Tesla and other electric car companies are pursuing the wrong route (batteries). I think fuel cells will, in the long run, make far more sense.
    Secondly, not one person here (nor the article) has mentioned the power of the oil companies. I don’t know what the biggest oil company is in Germany, but I’m sure BP and Shell are not desperate for electric vehicles to be introduced

    1. John Farnham

      The results of Ballard’s investment in fuel cell technology would not encourage me to invest in automotive applications. Much more interesting has always been the fate of the battery patents that were involved in the EV – 1….and provided a $300,000 fine to Toyota when the court upheld the notion that their battery infringed on the GM developed patents sold to Chevron in the RAV electric.
      The patent encumbrance of large automotive NiMH batteries refers to allegations that corporate interests have used the patent system to prevent the commercialization of nickel metal hydride (NiMH) battery technology.

  13. sod

    People here always totally ignore all signs of success. Let us take a look at Norway:

    Norway is reaching 25% electrics among new registrations and is going to ban gas cars in 2025.

    1. DirkH

      sod 22. January 2017 at 10:14 AM | Permalink | Reply
      “People here always totally ignore all signs of success. Let us take a look at Norway:”

      Well Norway subsidizes things into existence with profits from fossil fuels. Looks to me exactly like the Maduro economy. Let’s see whether the Norwegians do the full Zimbabwe dance like Maduro.

    2. AndyG55

      Remind us again what Norway’s main exports are !!

      You can bet if they didn’t have massive hydro capability and a small country, 99% hydro wasn’t it, sop . 😉

      … they would be using some of that that main export themselves.

      What is their percentage of wind power, I’m sure you told us once.

      Citing Norway is really quite hilarious, but if its all you have.. go for it.

      How’s you inner city basement heating going, btw.

  14. sod

    another optimistic point:

    all those delivery cars will go electric real soon. Deutsche Post is the spearhead:

    1. DirkH

      Still promoting a subsidy economy? But, what will keep your subsidy economy afloat?

      You hope that there are enough brainwashed idiots who vote your subsidy thieves into power? Well good luck. Maduro had the advantage of many poor unemployed voters.

      The Green SPD-CDU double-party have not yet managed to give enough poor unemployed imported Muslims voting rights to perpetuate their energy communism regime forever.

    2. AndyG55

      replacing pushbikes.. whoopy doo. !!!

    3. Adam Gallon

      Funny, we had electric milk floats in the UK decades ago.

      1. AndyG55

        Whatever happened to them, Adam.?

        Do they still deliver milk in parts of the UK?

        1. Jeff Wood

          The supermarkets grew large, and of course sold milk.

          If you are making a trip for the rest of the shopping, pick up some (cheap) milk at the same time.

          About ten years ago I had a client delivering milk to doorsteps, in a diesel van. His trade was dying.

          1. AndyG55

            I know it died out ages ago down here in Oz.

        2. Wookey

          “Do they still deliver milk in parts of the UK?”

          Yes. My neighbours get deliveries. The milk float is not electric, and some days it’s just a normal car.

          1. AndyG55

            There ya go.. the old ways still exist in some places 🙂

  15. Alan West

    The answer is to remove the battery from the car and have stations for quick replacement (use existing petrol stations) This will need standardisation not like historical cons I.e VHS.This technology already exists with public transport systems.

  16. Don

    So has anyone worked out how we will recharge ALL these electric vehicles?

    In the UK the grid is already stretched and if we replaced all ICE vehicles with EV, would the grid be able to cope?

    Should we start building coal fired power stations now?

    1. AndyG55

      “how we will recharge ALL these electric vehicles”

      Unicorn farts.. That’s the business sop is in.

    2. SebastianH

      If the distribution of charge current is uniform only 10-15% more power plant capacity is needed. If you can get the car owners to charge when the grid is less utilized you can get away with less …

      1. DirkH

        How do you get that idea? Currently 1/7 of German primary energy consumption is electricity. 3/7 is heating (basically all non-electric), 3/7 is transportation fuels. So let’s say the energy efficiency of transportation TRIPLES because electric motors are SO efficient. That still leaves you with a doubling of electricity consumption.

        1. sod

          “So let’s say the energy efficiency of transportation TRIPLES because electric motors are SO efficient. That still leaves you with a doubling of electricity consumption.”

          this is wrong. you should start with reading what other people have written about this topic: The real number is between 15 and 30%.

          real scientists start by reading stuff before they make claims. Your “back of the envelop” calculations are “unicorn farts”.

          1. AndyG55

            Poor Sebastian, and Sop.

            They live in a hallucinogenic dream world, utterly divorced from reality.

            GULLIBLE to the last to ultra-left green propaganda scams.

          2. DirkH

            Oh I see, real scientists get their info from SLATE. You know what? That confirms my hypothesis that the modern government scientist is an impostor and a fraudster.

          3. DirkH

            But I’m curious so I read your SLATE-scientist stuff.
            a) They’re talking about the USA. I mentioned explicitly GERMAN numbers.
            b) USA has 5 cents a kWh electricity outside the madhouse California.
            c) That’s why they use electricity for A/C AND for heating.
            d) Germans do NEITHER.
            e) Therefore our electricity consumption as a portion of total energy consumption is lower.
            f) Therefore the percentage rise is FAR HIGHER.
            g) My assumption includes TRUCKS. I said TRANSPORTATION.
            h) That’s why your SLATE scientists CONFIRM my numbers.

          4. yonason

            Yes, sod, let’s do look at this a bit more scientifically (see article) And when we do we find that, at least for American fuel prices…

            “Conclusion –

            Electric cars offer no savings in energy, money, or emissions at present. Electricity supply from renewables cannot cover but an insignificant portion of road vehicles. The numerical values in this article allow easy updates as conditions change in the future.”


            As usual, you are wrong. But that’s no surprise, we’re used to it.

          5. sod

            “Oh I see, real scientists get their info from SLATE.”

            There is an army saying about operating the radio: Think, push, talk.
            If you get it mixed up, bad stuff happens.

            Here it would transform into: read, write, send. You forgot the first part:

            “Ryan’s answer is a reasonable calculation. However the most widely accepted published attempt to answer the question was a study commissioned by Xcel Energy a few years ago. They were trying to answer the question of 75 percent market penetration of EVs. The answer they got for their coverage territory (mostly Minnesota and Colorado) was 14 percent.”

          6. SebastianH

            @AndyG55 And what is the reality? Something based on alternative facts maybe? 😉

          7. AndyG55

            “Something based on alternative facts maybe? ”

            No Sep, I’ll leave the alternative facts to you.

            Have you divested from all fossil fuel power yet? Got your EV powered from unicorn farts, rather than the coal or gas fired electricity supply system ?

            BE truthful to yourself, if you are capable…

            Or are you also, a brain-dead, monumental hypocrite.

        2. SebastianH

          3/7 of Germanys primary energy consumption is for transportation fuels? So this figure more than doubled since 2013? What are your sources?

          You multiply 600 billion km driven per year by an average of mileage of 20 kWh / 100 km and get an estimate of 120 TWh to charge all cars in Germany if they were all electric. Then you subtract the energy needed to refine fuels and get to a slightly lower number.

          1. DirkH

            Ok you are right here, it’s 1/3.
            Must have misremembered.

          2. SebastianH

            According to your link it was less than 1/5th in 2009. 2541 PJ for transport from a total of 13398 PJ.

  17. Jim

    Egads, I didn’t know a quick charge took 30 minutes. And an average of 120 k? But, I like to visit friends, in the US, it’s 60 miles to my nearest airport, so,I have to stop for an hour to recharge? As an businessman, not to look fresh, at a meeting, because I couldn’t run the AC in the car? Or the heater? That’s a selling point? Lion’s.

  18. Senex

    The electric motor in a Toyota Prius (a hybrid, not a pure electric car) uses about 1 kg of neodymium for its permanent magnets. Annual global production of neodymium in 2004 was about 7,000 metric tons, almost all from China. If the entire annual neodymium production was allocated to this use, it would only amount to 7 million Priuses. Also, the generators used in wind turbines are a major competing demand for neodymium. Thanks to the Energiewende, there is only a fraction of the total neodymium production available to the automobile industry.

    The battery packs used by the Prius contain 10-15 kg of lanthanum, which has a global production of 12,500 mt/year, or enough for 1 million Priuses.

    Fully electric vehicles, without the aid of an ICE like the Prius, will require greater amounts of these and other rare earth metals.

    In 2015, Germany produced 5.7 million passenger cars. Total revenue, both domestic and foreign was 404 billion euros, 20% of all German industry revenue.…/EN/…/industry-overview-automotive-industry-en.pdf

    A total conversion of production from ICE vechicles to electric would drastically reduce the production of passenger vehicles and have a massive impact on revenues. This would have a corresponding impact on state revenue from the auto industry, and therefore on public welfare. With the reduced availability of new vehicles, prices will rise, and private car ownership will become the privilege of a wealthy, city-dwelling elite.

    1. SebastianH

      Almost all pure electric vehicles use asynchronous motors and lithium ion batterys. They don’t use rare earth metals …

    2. DirkH

      “A total conversion of production from ICE vechicles to electric would drastically reduce the production of passenger vehicles”

      Nothing that couldn’t be fixed by an expansion of open pit mining like the world has never seen before. Also, make it mandatory to run the excavators and trucks electrically! That way it’ll be much more hilarious! Slave labor is Green, so, Roman propulsion methods are also an option!

  19. Rich Feather

    Interesting perspective. So, California has the largest number of auto sales, as a state, in the second largest auto sales buying country, the United States (behind China), and California garners a lot of attention because the buying trends are usually predictors for the rest of the country. That said, electric vehicles now represent 3% of the new sales market and looks to be increasing.

    Electricity can be made many ways: water, solar, petroleum, wind, gas, hydrogen, etc. Gasoline is made from… oil.

    If I’m producing cars and I look at the trends (i.e., limited control of oil production and growing interest in simpler maintenance and better technology), then Germany’s auto makers are making an egregious mistake, I’d argue, by ignoring this technology. And, in fact, I think the opinion piece written is wrong – VW is investing heavily in the technology, while the leading performance brands are using electrical drive trains coupled with ICE to reduce emissions/increase performance.

    Also, when you look at how well Tesla sales are doing in its segment compared to BMW, Mercedes, the author is misinformed and is spreading disinformation.

    1. yonason


      Unfortunately, even in the future nothing works.

    2. DirkH

      Rich, so a fraction of a fraction of a fraction is growing, hmm, do you think tax credits have anything to do with that?

  20. sandyallen

    Where are the billions of gigawatts of electricity going to come from? Bike generators at the YMCA, ridden by GlobSwarming leftists?

    1. SebastianH

      Where does the energy for transportation currently come from? You can use the same resources to produce electricity in power plants and drive at least the same distance as with ICE cars directly burning the fuel. Or you could generate the electricity by other means: nuclear, gas, solar, wind … whatever you desire.

      1. Senex

        “You can use the same resources to produce electricity in power plants and drive at least the same distance as with ICE cars directly burning the fuel”

        Are you saying that if a 1000 kg ICE vehicle can travel 20 km on a litre of fuel, that you can generate enough electricity from that same litre of fuel to charge the batteries of an otherwise identical 1000 kg electric car (including transmission losses) to enable the vehicle to travel the same 20 km? If so, then you have a different understanding of the laws of thermodynamics than I do…

        1. SebastianH

          That is exactly what I am saying.

          I hope you do not assume that an ICE vehicle can burn the fuel with the same efficiency as a big stationary power plant. On average the ICE vehicle will only use 20-30% of the energy in one litre of fuel while the power plant can convert 40+% into electricity. Transmission and charging losses would have to be enormous (25-50%) in order to not be able to travel the same distance with the generated electricity.

          1. DirkH

            While you are assuming near perfect conditions for electricity transmission and your electric cars, you consciously use the worst possible number for internal combustion engines. How about we use the most perfect number for them as well? Which is 45% efficiency.

            But that wouldn’t be helpful, right? One can only be right within the party because the party is the only tool history has created to create the New World. (Lev Tzvi Bronshtein)

          2. SebastianH

            I wrote “on average” on purpose. There is no Diesel engine that achieves 45% all the time in all driving scenarios. There are also additional losses in the gear box that electric cars currenty lack. However, a stationary Diesel engine could run at maximum efficiency all the time and this makes all the difference.

            There is no 50% loss in transmission of electricity and charging a battery and you would use other means to create electricity from fossil fuels which are less expensive and more efficient than running a stationary Diesel engine.

  21. The Startling Debacle Of Germany’s Electric Cars | NOT A LOT OF PEOPLE KNOW THAT
  22. yonason


    Brace yourselves…

    This is going to take the electric car world by storm.

    I’ll never look at battery powered cars the same again.

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