Sales of diesel cars are falling steeply and manufacturers are forced to offer steep discounts for new and used diesels alike. But the auto trade fair in Geneva shows the electric future is only slow in coming.
Despite China's car sales falling for nine months, German automakers are betting on new electric models to boost market share. Further headwinds could emerge when Beijing's generous electric car subsidies end next year.
Volkswagen Slovakia is laying off 3,000 people by June as the parent company shifts its focus to electric vehicles. The domestic economy is heavily dependent on car production, and EU emissions targets mean big changes.
Facing their biggest scandal in recent history, German automakers are scrambling to save face. Environmentalists view their overtures with skepticism, but say recent developments point to a tipping point on the horizon.
With EU diesel bans looming over cities and municipalities, Angela Merkel approved new funds to help improve air quality standards. But on hardware retro-fitting, Merkel's government said it could not yet provide a plan.
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