Electric cars criticized: Can’t keep raising prices like this

Those who want to buy an electric car must have a large budget. This simple rule has been proven time and time again in recent years, as truly affordable electric cars are hard to come by in this country. This situation is causing great criticism, even from within the industry.

Dead end for electric cars? Price must go down

Electric vehicles must eventually become affordable. This is the only request that not many customers are willing to sign. It comes from ADAC President Christian Reinicke. Auto experts accuse German manufacturers of setting the wrong priorities. They mainly sell expensive models.

A current example: Volkswagen. Just recently, CFO Arno Antlitz made it clear that customers shouldn’t expect prices to drop anytime soon. Volkswagen wants to prioritize better profits over high sales. In other words: sell expensive cars instead of many cars.

Especially in the electric car segment, the Wolfsburg-based company will work even harder to improve automotive profitability. Basically, there are only two ways to do this: raise prices or reduce production costs.

However, according to Reinicke, e-mobility isn’t reserved for “wealthy homeowners with their own solar panels and wall boxes.” The absence of affordable electric cars will become a problem not only for less affluent customers over time. In the long run, manufacturers could also be affected as strong models from Chinese rivals emerge, which German brands can’t match in terms of price.

Audi and Stellantis: CEOs React to Strong China Competition

This is also a concern shared by voices in the industry. Audi CEO Markus Duesmann recently made it clear: “We see a technology battle in China like I’ve never seen it before.” And further: “The German auto industry has underestimated the power of its Chinese rivals.” Audi itself has taken the consequences of this and will completely stop selling plug-in hybrids in China. Domestic manufacturers are simply too strong.

Stellantis CEO Carlos Tavares doesn’t want to go down this route. For him, now it’s a matter of accepting competition from China, as well as from Tesla with drastic price cuts. The boss of Europe’s youngest carmaker is strongly warning against allowing electric vehicles from other manufacturers to replace European products.

“There’s only one way to solve the problem. We have to accept competition,” Tavares said. Otherwise, Europe will quickly fall behind in the coming years. If European industry and politics aren’t on the right track right now, Europe will be nothing but a great vacation destination for Chinese and American tourists in ten years’ time.

However, he does not consider the battle for the top spot in the international electric car market as a failure: “It will be an interesting battle,” said the Stellantis CEO.

Meanwhile, VW will continue to rely on popular – and often expensive – SUVs in the years to come. VW plans to introduce three new models, including at least one that can be purchased for its size at a relatively affordable price: an SUV version of its planned low-cost ID.2 electric car. plan, called ID.2X. However, it is questionable whether this is what critics like Reinicke think of as an affordable electric car.

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