Electric Vehicles

EU Caves to German Pressure to Include E-fuels
E-fuels are uncharted waters for use in cars, but Germany insists they be exempt from the ICE ban. © Shutterstock/luchschenF

EU Caves to German Pressure to Include E-fuels

By Simon Johns - Mar 28, 2023

Lawmakers of the European Union have allowed for production of some internal combustion engines vehicles after the 2035 cutoff under pressure from member state Germany, the bloc’s biggest carmaker. 

Member states gave their final approval on Tuesday to end sales of new ICE vehicles by 2035.

The European Union has been gradually tightening emissions allowances for new vehicles for 30 years. The process would have culminated in 2035 with an outright ban on the production of ICE cars. The ban is central to the bloc’s ambition to reach climate neutrality by 2050.

The compromise means Germany can approve an agreement reached in October that requires new cars to be zero-emissions. However, a rubber-stamp vote earlier in March was delayed by German Transport Minister Volker Wissing, a member of the pro-business FDP and the junior member of the coalition government.

Opponents to the compromise were disappointed.

Benjamin Stephan, Greenpeace Germany’s spokesperson on transport and climate change, told Bloomberg that the deal was a setback for climate protection. “This stinky compromise undermines climate protection in transport, and it harms Europe,” he said.

The deal offers a glimmer of hope to the continent’s passenger car motor oil developers and manufacturers, who face declining sales post-2035.///

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