The complete phase-out of diesel and petrol is getting closer and closer. In a historic decision, the EU Parliament voted in favor of banning internal combustion engines from new cars by the mid-2030s.

A majority of MEPs has ensured that from 2035 manufacturers will only be allowed to bring cars and vans onto the market that do not emit any greenhouse gases that are harmful to the climate. In concrete terms, this means that petrol and diesel cars may no longer be re-registered.

Combustion engine off by 2035: Germany is also behind the goal

Germany has already committed to the exit date of 2035. Environment Minister Steffi Lemke (Greens) said in Brussels in March on behalf of the federal government that the goal of ending the use of combustion engines in cars and vans by 2035 was supported.

Politicians are not alone in this: Even large car manufacturers such as Mercedes and Ford had called for a sales stop for combustion engines in the leading markets from 2035 at the world climate conference in Glasgow in November.

The Green MP Michael Bloss even sees an advantage for the German car industry in the decision: “We have decided in favor of the future of Europe as an automotive location.” In the future, the best electric cars and the latest batteries would come from Europe.

CDU fears for numerous jobs

The CDU sees the decision less positively: “Unfortunately, the Greens, Liberals and Social Democrats prefer to put everything on the electric mobility card,” said CDU MEP Jens Gieseke. In his own words, he fears for Europe’s competitiveness and numerous jobs. But he conceded: “The ban on combustion engines in 2035 will probably no longer be preventable.”

There is still a small way out for combustion engines: the cars could be operated with synthetic and environmentally friendly fuels. However, the MEPs also spoke out against this solution. With these, a classic combustion engine could be operated in a climate-neutral manner. However, critics fear that there are already too few of these for aviation and shipping, which are less easy to operate electrically than cars or vans.