Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?

CleanTechnica
The German minister for Economic Affairs,  Peter Altmaier, has delivered a hardcore smackdown to local auto giants, asking them when they will build EVs that are "half as sexy as a Tesla."

Autonomous Vehicles

German Economy Minister — Tesla’s Cars >2× As Sexy As BMW, VW, & Daimler EVs

The German minister for Economic Affairs,  Peter Altmaier, has delivered a hardcore smackdown to local auto giants, asking them when they will build EVs that are “half as sexy as a Tesla.”

The German minister for Economic Affairs, Peter Altmaier, has delivered a hardcore smackdown to local auto giants, asking them when they will build EVs that are “half as sexy as a Tesla.”

Photo by Olaf Kosinsky / kosinsky.eu (some rights reserved)

Isn’t the beaver-mouthed BMW iNEXT sexy enough for Herr Altmaier?

LA Auto Show 2019 BMW iNEXT

Smackdown

As reported by Handelsblatt, minister Altmaier was attending an AI event in Berlin over the weekend with the CEOs of Daimler and VW when he asked the auto bosses:

“I really wonder when you, Mr. Zetsche, or you, Mr. Diess, or Mr. Krüger from BMW will be in a position to build an electric car that is half as sexy as a Tesla. As far as the attractiveness of your e-cars is concerned, you could actually come up with some fresh ideas.” (translated)

The CEOs didn’t respond to this particular question (and BMW’s Krüger wasn’t himself present). Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, after all. However, VW’s boss Diess acknowledged falling behind in the area of vehicle AI and autonomy, saying, “But we are determined to catch up. The game is not lost yet.”

Daimler’s Zetsche talked about getting the right balance between pushing forwards on autonomy and adopting a precautionary approach. “What we do not want is regulation that gives the industry a completely free hand, which simply waves everything through.”

At the same time, Zetsche was prepared to gaze into his crystal ball into the future, predicting that autonomy would initially take hold in haulage, in commercial vehicles, and on highways. He predicted that these developments would come before robotaxis. Perhaps he’s unaware that Waymo is already rolling out a robotaxi service in Phoenix, Arizona.

Just Good Friends?

To his credit, Peter Altmaier has a strong record of pushing the lethargic German auto industry towards electrification. In April of this year, we reported on him calling on the industry to invest tens of billions of euros into EVs. Then, in August, he asked, “When is our automobile industry, which is so good, actually going to be in a position to build a car that travels 50 kilometers further than a Tesla and costs 10,000 euros less?”

Photo by Olaf Kosinsky / kosinsky.eu (some rights reserved)

Just a couple of months ago, Altmaier was at it again, announcing plans for government support of battery cell research and production in Germany, amounting to some €2 billion. There’s no doubt that Altmaier wants to be a good friend to the Germany electromobility industry, even though he doesn’t find it sexy.

 
 
Appreciate CleanTechnica’s originality? Consider becoming a CleanTechnica member, supporter, or ambassador — or a patron on Patreon.
 
Have a tip for CleanTechnica, want to advertise, or want to suggest a guest for our CleanTech Talk podcast? Contact us here.

New Podcast: How NVIDIA Is Bringing Autonomy To Automakers

Max is an anthropologist, social theorist and international political economist, trying to ask questions and encourage critical thinking about social and environmental justice, sustainability and the human condition. He has lived and worked in Europe and Asia, and is currently based in Barcelona. Find Max's book on social theory, follow Max on twitter @Dr_Maximilian and at MaximilianHolland.com, or contact him via LinkedIn.

Comments

#1 most loved electric vehicle, solar energy, and battery news & analysis site in the world.

 

Support our work today!

Advertisement

Power CleanTechnica: $3/Month

Tesla News Solar News EV News Data Reports

Advertisement

EV Sales Charts, Graphs, & Stats

Advertisement

Our Electric Car Driver Report

30 Electric Car Benefits

Tesla Model 3 Video

Renewable Energy 101 In Depth

solar power facts

Tesla News

EV Reviews

Home Efficiency

You May Also Like

Clean Power

Quartz published an article recently with a headline stating that Tesla is the world’s most shorted stock — even more than GameStop, which got...

Cars

Europe’s third largest auto market, the UK, saw 13% plugin electric vehicle market share in February, up 2.3× from 5.7% a year ago. The...

Clean Power

A few years ago, Tesla announced a plan to start building next-level Superchargers. These Superchargers would be huge (a lot of stalls), include lounges...

Cars

Porsche speculates about a drop top Taycan while Volkswagen announces OTA is now part of every new ID.3/4.

Copyright © 2021 CleanTechnica. The content produced by this site is for entertainment purposes only. Opinions and comments published on this site may not be sanctioned by and do not necessarily represent the views of CleanTechnica, its owners, sponsors, affiliates, or subsidiaries.