Mercedes-Benz owner Daimler is stepping up the pace of its transition to electric mobility and plans to largely eliminate internal combustion engines before the end of the decade.
“We are switching from EV first to EV only,” a high ranking executive familiar with the plan told Automobilwoche, a sister publication of Automotive News Europe.
This means that every model series will have a full-electric version, while production, sales and structures will be switched to a business without diesel and gasoline engines.
Plug-in hybrids could also cease to play a role after 2030, Automobilwoche reported.
However, there will initially be no firm date for dropping combustion engine cars because they will be in demand after 2030 in some markets, depending on the charging infrastructure, Automobilwoche said.
Daimler CEO Ola Kallenius plans to present details of the plan at a strategy day on July 22, sources told Automobilwoche.
The automaker is expected to announce plans to introduce new platforms for additional electric models as well as its own software operating system in 2024.
Previously, Daimler had said it only expected plug-in hybrids or purely electric vehicles to account for more than 50 percent of passenger car sales by the end of the decade.
Daimler declined to comment when contacted by Automotive News Europe.
The move to all-electric would put Mercedes on a par with other automakers that are shifting to electric-only sales, especially in Europe where tougher CO2 emissions limits are expected to make combustion engine cars unviable.
Opel CEO Michael Lohscheller said during parent Stellantis’s electrification strategy update on Thursday that the automaker will become a pure electric brand in Europe by 2028.
Audi said last month that it will phase out production of combustion engines by early next decade except in China.
The Jaguar brand has said will become all-electric starting in 2025. Volvo and Bentley have said they expect to be electric-only brands by 2030. Ford has said it will only sell full-electric cars in Europe by 2030.
BMW has a more cautious approach. It says it expects half of its sales to be full-electric models by 2030.
Volkswagen brand plans to stop selling combustion engines cars in Europe by 2035 as it shifts to full-electric vehicles, but later in the U.S. and China.
GÖTEBORG, Sweden, April 21, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — Sharing the Green Deal vision of sustainable transport and a carbon neutral Europe by 2050, two leading companies in the commercial vehicle industry, Daimler Truck AG and the Volvo Group, have signed a preliminary non-binding agreement to establish a new joint venture. The intention is to develop, produce and commercialize fuel cell systems for heavy-duty vehicle applications and other use cases. Daimler will consolidate all its current fuel cell activities in the joint venture. The Volvo Group will acquire 50% in the joint venture for the sum of approximately EUR 0.6 billion on a cash and debt free basis.
“Transport and logistics keep the world moving, and the need for transport will continue to grow. Truly CO2-neutral transport can be accomplished through electric drive trains with energy coming either from batteries or by converting hydrogen on board into electricity. For trucks to cope with heavy loads and long distances, fuel cells are one important answer and a technology where Daimler has built up significant expertise through its Mercedes-Benz fuel cell unit over the last two decades. This joint initiative with the Volvo Group is a milestone in bringing fuel cell powered trucks and buses onto our roads,” says Martin Daum, Chairman of the Board of Management Daimler Truck AG and Member of the Board of Management of Daimler AG.
“Electrification of road transport is a key element in delivering the so called Green Deal, a carbon neutral Europe and ultimately a carbon neutral world. Using hydrogen as a carrier of green electricity to power electric trucks in long-haul operations is one important part of the puzzle, and a complement to battery electric vehicles and renewable fuels. Combining the Volvo Group and Daimler’s experience in this area to accelerate the rate of development is good both for our customers and for society as a whole. By forming this joint venture, we are clearly showing that we believe in hydrogen fuel cells for commercial vehicles. But for this vision to become reality, other companies and institutions also need to support and contribute to this development, not least in order to establish the fuel infrastructure needed,” says Martin Lundstedt, Volvo Group President and CEO.
The Volvo Group and Daimler Truck AG will be 50/50 partners in the joint venture, which will operate as an independent and autonomous entity, with Daimler Truck AG and the Volvo Group continuing to be competitors in all other areas of business. Joining forces will decrease development costs for both companies and accelerate the market introduction of fuel cell systems in products used for heavy-duty transport and demanding long-haul applications. In the context of the current economic downturn cooperation has become even more necessary in order to meet the Green Deal objectives within a feasible time-frame.
The common goal is for both companies to offer heavy-duty vehicles with fuel cells for demanding long-haul applications in series production in the second half of the decade. In addition, other automotive and