Fraudulent objectives: An example of electronic trucks shows how counselors and politicians plan in a way that ignores reality
Billions in grants are not only available for electric cars, but also for trucks. Advisory companies provide good forecasts for the future, politicians listen to them. At the same time, exporters make it clear that plans and facts often fall apart.
It is a strange process: the city of Salzburg in Austria may have to pay a fine of more than 400,000 euros if it does not turn its municipal car into electric cars fast enough. ORF reports. The reason is a law that provides a fine if the prescribed electricity level is not met.
The city should buy electric trucks that do not even exist
Problem: Electric vehicles are not available in most application areas, either because they are not available or because they do not exist at all. ORF reports: “The city administration welcomes the intended change in mobility, but it cannot be implemented without restrictions, “says Maximilian Tischler, director of municipal administration:” It is not easy. Cars are also more expensive. The MP did not just want to force us to buy such instruments. But also the industry that has to produce those cars.‘”
But even when experts pointed out to the city that electric vehicles were not suitable for many areas of use, such as the winter service, the administration passed a law on electric preferences. The taxpayer does not have to bear the expense of purchasing electronic vehicles – any penalties for programs that cannot be executed at all must also be paid from public funds.
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Post players fail in the winter
Although the example from Salzburg illustrates the difference between political will and real needs in a clear way, companies that want to switch to electricity voluntarily sometimes find it difficult. For example, Deutsche Post has thousands of street scooters in use. He wants to improve his CO2 balance. Despite short distances and technical problems, including fire, they carry out their service quietly in many cities – but things get complicated in the ice and snow: In Berchtesgarden, diesel trucks had to go again because cars electricity failed to be used during the winter.
Only 28% will buy diesel trucks
For the EU and the German federal government, however, the case is clear: as part of the traffic change, not only car traffic but also truck traffic must be connected. Plans like these are backed by promising studies that predict price equity – i.e. cost adjustments – for diesel trucks and electric trucks in the near future, or for other positive effects.
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Aside from the studies of the “Transport & Environment” lobby, a recent study conducted by Bain & Company’s management consultants came to the conclusion that that by 2025 every second truck in European trucks will have an alternative vehicle. “In three years, about 60 percent of the companies surveyed would buy electric or hydrogen trucks or at least hybrid ones. Their expectations go further and may exceed the capacity of the developers. According to this, about half of their ships must have trucks with alternative drives by 2025. “, according to market researchers. When asked what is the most likely criterion for the next purchase, only 28 percent of German companies surveyed would buy a truck with a diesel engine.
Experts choose subjects
Studies of this kind are undoubtedly influential in politics, because parties such as “Transport and the Environment” act as lobbyists in Berlin or Brussels and advise politicians. But how true is this prediction?
FOCUS Online asked the Federal Road Transport, Transport and Dumping Association (BGL), where most transporters and distributors are organized. BGL board spokesman Dirk Engelhardt immediately discovered several things in Bain’s current study, which he considers to be untrue:
- For example, companies from Germany, France, the United Kingdom and Spain were surveyed for the study, which does not reflect the truck market: the largest truck fleets are registered in Eastern European countries.
- Engelhardt goes on to say: “Access to all driving technologies is considered easy in the study – but what does it mean to ask companies if they would buy hydrogen trucks by 2024 if even the market leader has just announced that they will be ready for series production by 2027.? ” A BGL board spokesman also considers the expansion of billing infrastructure to be optimistic.
- “The definition of the question of where all the green electricity will come from, which not only truck operators want to use in the next few years, has also not been considered. More than 190,000 wind turbines were needed to put traffic lights on the road – more than six times the current number.Said Engelhardt.
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“Distribution security must be ensured”
“We are also convinced of the changes in truck technology, even if we take a closer look at the optimistic timing presented here. In all further considerations, the security of supply to the population and the economy must be ensured‘Engelhardt explains.
The intention to “change the car” is one thing, the practical implementation is another. Hauler Detlef Benecke from Berlin says: “If I find that I have time to relax with this idea, I have to make up for lost hours. Then I say beware, stay home with your dung! continue That cannot be displayed yet.Certainly not today, because it cannot be used wisely. We would need 2 hours of charging and a distance of 900 miles. However, this is only available in other ways aroundsaid the bearer.
Haulier: Requires 900 miles and two hours of charging
When it comes to costs, market researchers and lobbying agencies are already seeing an electric truck ahead. According to a recent study of Transport and Environment: “On average, electronic cars are already 28 percent cheaper per kilometer to buy and operate than the average diesel car. This is the conclusion of a study that examined six countries where 76% of all new car sales in Europe are made: France, Germany, Italy, Poland, Spain and the United Kingdom.“Interestingly: With the exception of Poland, the relevant truck markets in Eastern Europe were not researched here either.
After all: In terms of transporters – that is, small commercial vehicles that are used mainly in urban areas – there are actually a number of vehicles available as well as experience, as opposed to heavy electric trucks. There are electronic cars, for example, from Volkswagen, Daimler, Renault or Chinese brands such as Maxus.
“Count the companies that benefit you”
Economist and travel researcher Alexander Eisenkopf from Zeppelin University in Friedrichshafen, however, sees the study as of little importance. According to Eisenkopf, it is of course logical for companies to include purchase subsidies in their total cost calculations. “However, the conclusion that the government must set more stringent CO2 limits for consumers to finally get their electronic cars is exciting. If the benefits are obvious, users will make sure they get those ships. In this highly competitive business, every penny is calculated, so you cannot afford to lose it. It is very interesting that the lobbying group of electric cars should count the entrepreneurs what is the benefit to them.‘exclaims Eisenkopf.
Fuel costs and battery prices: Both explode
Many predictions of NGOs and consulting firms are also in the dark because the battery price reductions they thought were not fulfilled, but vice versa: Lithium prices, for example, a significant component of almost all current electric car batteries, have recently increased by 400 percent.. According to the US Geological Survey, demand for raw materials increased by 238 percent to 93,000 tons from 2010 to 2021, three-quarters of which is needed for electric car batteries.
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With multi-country expansion plans in the field of electronic mobility, demand will increase more frequently, which means that it is not possible for prices to fall again; further increase is more likely. Oil prices for fossil fuels are also rising. However, unlike a few natural resources of essential raw materials such as lithium, this is politically motivated as a catalyst aside from special events such as the Ukraine war, because many countries want to eliminate fossil fuels, making their funding less attractive. . However, this may change once more oil and gas is regenerated for distribution safety reasons.
However, this means that any price equity forecast, i.e., where expensive electric vehicles such as burning cars, are invalid – which jeopardizes the planning security of companies wishing to convert their car to electric or other alternative vehicles. kind.
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Politicians have previously lost faith
Basically, transport companies certainly do not hate alternative drives and will also buy battery or electric hydrogen vehicles if there is a significant cost savings. From a company perspective, this means that any increase in costs should be paid by subsidy or tax breaks – costs will end up for consumers.
However, BGL board spokesman Dirk Engelhardt points out that politicians have already lost faith in this topic: “Many transportation companies and freight forwarders have accepted political pressure and have invested millions in air-conditioning technology now available for long-distance truck transport, namely LNG. Now that LNG prices have risen even higher than diesel prices, these family businesses are on the verge of collapse and they feel that politicians have collapsed because there is no support for LNG founders. Contrary to the background of the biological diesel disaster a few years ago, the current LNG catastrophe will most likely not remain unaffected by the enthusiasm for innovation for new alternative operators in the transportation industry.. ”
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