When it comes to the question of electric mobility in Germany, there are two camps. As claimed BMW development chief Klaus Cheerful, there would be no customer demand. On the other side, the CDU cheered on Twitter, Germany have outrun Norway overtook both e-cars.

Both are wrong. Admittedly, the registration figures for electric cars and plug-in hybrids in Germany in the first half of 2019 are actually higher than in Norway. But in Norway already drove at the beginning of the year, according to official figures, seven percent of all cars with electricity - in Germany, there are currently 0.26 percent. A sobering figure, considering that the BMW i3 and the Model S from Tesla have been offered in Germany for six years already. And yet, there is much to suggest that sales of electric cars will pick up in the coming months and years.

A glance at the registration statistics of the Federal Motor Transport Authority shows that 37,000 electric cars were registered in Germany in the first seven months of the year, 187 percent more than in the same period of the previous year. In addition, there are nearly 20,000 plug-in hybrid vehicles. These are cars with internal combustion engine that can be charged at the socket and then drive a few kilometers electrically. However, the Germans apparently prefer drives without charging plugs: in recent years, classic hybrid cars in particular have been bought whose internal combustion engine and braking process generate electrical energy.

The demand for the environmental bonus, which the government has just extended until the end of 2020, also underscores the upward trend. By the end of July, more than 130,000 applications had been submitted to the Federal Office of Economics and Export Control, more than 30 percent of them in the current year. The environmental bonus has been paid since mid-2016.

Fateful year 2020

The increased interest of buyers could be due to the larger selection of models. While Audi with the E-Tron and Daimler with the EQC are priced in the premium segment, there are now several more favorable models of foreign manufacturers, including the Model 3by Tesla. The registration statistics for the first seven months of the year are given by the Renault Zoe. For the French, the small electric car accounts for 8.2 percent of all registrations in Germany. The VW E-Golf is just 0.9 percent.

The actual entry into the electric mass market dares Volkswagen in the coming year. In the age of new powertrain technology, the ID3 is set to become what the Beetle and Golf were in the age of burners - automotive icons. With the acronym ID, VW plans a sedan, a crossover model and a VW bus, all electric. At BMW, an electric mini and the iX3 will follow seven years after i3 in the coming year. Porsche will launch the electric Taycan in 2020.

Electromobility - Cabinet concludes funding package for climate-friendly mobility Tax relief should make electromobility more attractive. Public transport tickets for employees will be completely tax-free for the employer in the future. © Photo: Kay Nietfeld

"In 2020, we will see even greater growth in electromobility because the RIP criteria are largely met," says Stefan Bratzel. The head of the Center for Automotive Management in Bergisch Gladbach uses the abbreviation RIP for range, infrastructure and price in his lectures. The range is now even in mid-range cars like the ID3 over 400 kilometers. The first edition of the ID still costs 40,000 euros, but thereafter the prices are around 30,000 euros.