26 July 2017

Death sentence date for internal combustion engine?

Whether it is a chicken or egg situation, the accelerated demise of the internal combustion engine has been well flagged in recent weeks, writes Brian Byrne.

Volvo's decision announced a while ago that it will only produce all-electric or hybrid cars from 2019 was the kick-starter in the public mind, and this morning's news that the UK is to ban all petrol and diesel new cars by 2040 puts a timeline on the matter. This follows a similar move in France announced by President Macron.

BMW is the latest to move, announcing that a new all-electric Mini will go on sale in 2019 as part of a plan to electrify all its brands and models. The company expects that up to a quarter of sales will be of electrified vehicles by 2025, by which time it will be producing a range of EVs.

BMW says regulations and incentives in different markets will play a significant role in the kind of vehicle powertrains it offers, but with Europe's second and third largest car-buying countries now laying down an end-of-game date, the electric side of things will only accelerate.