BMW: Don’t be too dependent on EVs, ICE still has life

BMW: Don’t be too dependent on EVs, ICE still has life

Many automakers are currently aboard the hype train that is electric vehicles, but BMW CEO Oliver Zipse has warned against becoming too dependent on EVs in selected markets. He told Reuters there was still a market for combustion engine cars.

“When you look at the technology coming out, the EV push, we must be careful because at the same time, you increase dependency on very few countries,” Zipse said at a roundtable in New York. He also pointed out that the supply of raw materials for batteries was largely controlled by China.

“If someone cannot buy an EV for some reason but needs a car, would you rather propose he continues to drive his old car forever? If you are not selling combustion engines anymore, someone else will,” he went on.

Zipse is a proponent for clean energy vehicles but has long advocated against all-out bans on combustion engine car sales. Regulators have dialed up the pressure for players in the auto industry to curb their carbon emissions and environmental impact, prompting the creation of a slew of ambitious electrification roadmaps.

The BMW chief argued that offering more fuel-efficient combustion engine cars was key, both from a profit and environmental perspective. He alluded to obvious gaps in charging infrastructure in some markets, as well as the high price of EVs. Mercedes-Benz’s chief technical officer Markus Schäfer shared the same sentiment and recently said EVs are years away from achieving cost parity of ICE vehicles.

Besides that, companies also needed to plan for necessary cost adjustments, and prepare for energy and raw material prices to remain high. They can do this by streamlining production and making them more efficient, as well as stepping up recycling efforts to keep costs down. BMW recently committed to using use sustainably produced aluminium wheels from 2024, a move that will trim CO2 emissions by 500,000 tonnes annually.

“We have a peak now, they might not stay at the peak, but they will not go back to former prices,” he said. “How much energy you need and use, and circularity, is important – for environmental reasons but even more for economic reasons.”

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Matthew H Tong

An ardent believer that fun cars need not be fast and fast cars may not always be fun. Matt advocates the purity and simplicity of manually swapping cogs while coping in silence of its impending doom. Matt's not hot. Never hot.



  • Civic Turbo 2018 on Apr 18, 2022 at 2:12 pm

    ICE no charging downtime. RON95 still cheap

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 33 Thumb down 2
    • Mr. Sotong on Apr 18, 2022 at 3:09 pm

      Not many ppl drive 300km+ everyday non stop that they can’t afford to have any charging down time. If you are one of those then by all means stick to ICE, but please do not discourage others to do the same.

      EV’s are eventually the cleaner solution. People will argue that emissions from mining and electricty production will bad the good, but they must realise that it is much easier to control these at the source than leaving it in the hands of consumers to take car of the environment, especially in Malaysia where the majority do not care how the environment is for their children and grandchildren.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 20 Thumb down 36
      • Arnie on Apr 18, 2022 at 11:52 pm
        His words will come sooner than later. ICE will be bak!

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 5
        • ICE, hybrid, plug in hybrid and fuel cell vehicles are best, EV will have problems if selling EV immediately. Even it is too dangerous to make more batteries and don’t know where to throw EV batteries

          Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 1
  • He is correct. Especially for third-world countries such as ours where the infrastructure isn’t even at its infancy — it’s pretty much nonexistent.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 32 Thumb down 1
  • Brian on Apr 18, 2022 at 3:03 pm

    For those demanding cheap EV and cheaper roadtax, there you have it. BMW have said it, Mercedes have said it, Toyota have said it. Stop your whining.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 24 Thumb down 5
  • klguy on Apr 18, 2022 at 11:02 pm

    for 3rd world countries like Malaysia, its still a long journey for EVs….so ICE it is..

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 9
    • Agreed! But it is not third world countries, just that it will not make wise move if selling EV cars immediately

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 1
  • JOHNATHAN on Apr 19, 2022 at 11:47 am

    POV: you spent 80% of your RND budget attempting to develop an engine that’s cleaner than an EV and you finally realize after half a decade that it’s not possible.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

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