Frankfurt / Main (AP) - At the opening of the IAA Motor Show in Frankfurt, the heads of works of BMW, Daimler and Volkswagen have opposed the demonization of the auto industry.

"In the public discussion you get the impression right now that the car is nothing but a single risk. On the danger scale it lies somewhere between Ebola and North Korean rockets, »said the top VW employee representative Bernd Osterloh the« Handelsblatt ». Also, the works council chairmen of Daimler and BMW, Michael Brecht and Manfred Schoch, turned against the increasing criticism of cars and especially SUVs.

The industry is moving by driving forward the electrification of transport, said Schoch. To make the turnaround possible, Brecht proposed a concerted action: "If we form an alliance of politics, environmental organizations and the auto industry, then we will come to solutions faster." But the aim of a dialogue can not be to abolish the car.

In the midst of growing economic worries among manufacturers and suppliers, the International Motor Show will open in the morning by German Chancellor Angela Merkel (CDU). During their tour of the exhibition grounds, they will be accompanied by Hesse's Prime Minister Volker Bouffier (CDU) and the President of the German Association of the Automotive Industry (VDA), Bernhard Mattes. It is the first of two trade visitor days, and on Saturday, the general public will be able to see the novelties at the biggest auto show in the world.

Around the exhibition there is fierce criticism from climate protectors. These accuse the auto industry of not resolutely pursuing the shift towards emission-free electromobility and of continuing to rely on climate-damaging city SUVs. Big demonstrations are announced for the weekend. The mood is also characterized by a slowing car economy.

In the afternoon, Green boss Robert Habeck is expected at the IAA. He is to take part in a discussion there with Daimler CEO Ola Källenius. In advance, Habeck has demanded a fundamental change in politics. "It needs the clear legal requirement that from 2030 only emission-free cars will be newly registered. Until then, rising annual quotas for emission-free cars have to pave the way, »said Habeck of the« Rheinische Post »(Thursday). The industry needs planning and investment security and a «strong push».

In addition, the motor vehicle tax should be fundamentally reformed and strictly aligned with CO2 emissions and energy consumption, said Habeck. Small, low-energy cars should be relieved, energy-consuming cars like SUVs are taxed much higher. "This is true not only for CO2 emissions, but for the entire energy consumption - including in e-cars," said the Green politician that nothing is gained if the car companies continue to produce more and more off-road cars, even if this with Power instead of driving with fuel.