The electric vehicle future is fast approaching, as Germany is now moving forward with aggressive subsidies for new buyers.
According to The Guardian, in an attempt to meet climate change goals, Germany will be handing out 1 billion euros in subsidies to new electric and hybrid car buyers.
Here’s how it works: Buy an all electric vehicle, get 4,000 euros; buy a hybrid, get 3,000 euros. Money is split 50-50 between the public purse and auto manufactures. This is being done to jump-start the lackluster electric car market in Germany at the moment.
The program is set to launch next month, and if things go according to plan, then Germany will have 1 million electric vehicles on the road by 2020. It’s a lofty goal, as currently Germany only has 50,000 electric vehicles on the road out of about 45 million total cars.
So far the major German auto manufacturers have signed up. This includes BMW, Daimler, and Volkswagen. The program is open to all manufacturers, both foreign and domestic.
Does that mean buyers can use the subsidy on the futuristic looking BMW i8? Not exactly. The subsidy will only apply to vehicles that cost less than 60,000 euros.
Germany also seems very optimistic about the programs success. “If you want one, buy it quickly,” said the country’s finance minister, Wolfgang Schäuble.
Germany will also invest 300 million euros in charging infrastructure, adding stations in cities and along the autobahn, which is its federal highway system. It will also invest another 100 million euros to purchase electric cars for its federal fleet.
The country will continue to pursue environmentally conscious goals for the next decade, leading into the rest of the century. This includes phasing out nuclear power by 2022, as well as boosting wind and solar power production. Germany hopes to have 50 percent of its energy from renewable sources by 2050.
Here’s hoping the rest of the world follows Germany’s example.