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European vehicle makers welcome policy coordination around e-mobility


09 Feb 2010



San  Sebastian,  9  February 2010 – The European automobile manufacturers

welcome  the initiative taken by the Spanish Presidency of the Council of

the  European  Union  to  discuss the opportunities as well as challenges

offered  by e-mobility during today’s informal Competitiveness Council in

San Sebastian. EU ministers exchanged views with leaders and experts from

across society, including the automobile industry.

Electric  mobility  will clearly play an important role in the future and

there is room as well as need for coordinated policy support. At the same

time  it  is  important  to  maintain  a  broader approach to sustainable

mobility.  Conventional powertrain technologies with high-tech combustion

engines  as well as fuels will continue to play a dominant role for years

to come and progress in this field must continue as well.

The  automobile  industry  pleads  for  an ambitious as well as realistic

framework                            to                           promote

e-mobility.  “The  ecological  benefits  of  emission-free  mobility  are

obvious.  And  we  are now at a point where, contrary to past experience,

electric  propulsion is finally becoming a viable alternative”, said ACEA

President  Dieter Zetsche (Chairman of the Board of Management of Daimler

AG), addressing EU ministers.

A  winning  effort  to  make  e-mobility commercially and environmentally

successful should be built on five main pillars:

-  A  sound,  long-term  and  coordinated  policy towards sustainable


-  Boosting  customer acceptance and demand through market incentives

as well as a widely available recharging infrastructure

- Global standards to recharge vehicles

- Support for further R&D

- Low-carbon energy production

Such  a  strategy  will  help  secure  EU-leadership  in  engineering and

competence,  with  a  potential  positive impact on employment in the EU.

Governments  of  USA,  Japan  and  China already support new technologies

intensively,  and  this  poses  a challenge to European vehicle makers in

terms of their global competitiveness.

EU  vehicle  manufacturers  are  world-wide  technology  leaders  in fuel

efficiency  and  safety  and they are determined to retain that position.

The  industry  is  transforming  its product portfolio to include a broad

range  of  electrically  chargeable  cars,  trucks  and  buses, including

plug-in  hybrid,  extended  range  electric  (including  fuel  cells) and

battery electric vehicles.

For  electric  mobility  to  take  off  and fulfil its potential, further

significant  and  simultaneous  investment is needed by multiple players.

These  must  also  all  work  closely  together, including the automotive

industry,   the   energy   producers  and  providers,  the  research  and

development  community as well as governments on various levels – from EU

institutions to towns and city councils.

NB - The presentation made by Dieter Zetsche is available on ACEA’swebsite.