Dhe financial support for the purchase of electric cars was in greater demand in July than ever since it was launched in mid-2016. In the past month, 19,993 applications for the so-called innovation bonus were submitted, as the Federal Ministry of Economics announced on Monday to the Reuters news agency. The numbers are to be officially announced later this day. A total of 69,606 applications had been submitted by the end of July this year – almost 79 percent more than in the same period in 2019.
The federal government has been promoting the purchase of electric cars and hybrid models for years. As part of the latest economic stimulus package to deal with the coronavirus crisis, the state’s share of funding was doubled. This has been in effect since July 8th. In addition, VAT was temporarily reduced, which should help the automotive industry, among other things. Until the end of 2021, buyers of electric cars can receive a subsidy of up to 9,000 euros, with hybrid models it is a maximum of 6750 euros.
Federal Minister of Economics Peter Altmaier said that the increased funding would give economic momentum at the right time. “Our goal is for the upswing to gain momentum in autumn.” Germany is threatened with the worst recession of the post-war period this year due to the pandemic, but the situation should improve over the course of the year.
Critic: Hybrid cars are only climate-friendly on paper
The Federal Office of Economics and Export Control (Bafa) is responsible for processing applications. “We are confident that the high demand will continue,” said Bafa President Torsten Safarik.
Funding for hybrid models is controversial because many of them are practically never driven electrically. Critics therefore complain that these are only climate-friendly on paper. However, it is questionable whether the production of all-electric cars will be sufficient to keep up with demand. Many German manufacturers continue to focus on combustion and diesel vehicles.
However, this corresponds to the demand. The Federal Motor Transport Authority reported for June that at 51.5 percent, half of all new cars registered were gasoline-powered. Diesel cars followed with 30.6 percent. The share of new vehicles with hybrid drives was 13.7 percent. Electric cars achieved a share of 3.7 percent.