On the occasion of the launch of the EQC, the first electric SUV in Mercedes history, Daimler executives explained their "Ambition 2039" plan to achieve sustainable mobility in just 20 years .
The opportunity to recall that, in terms of climate change, it is not only the amount of CO2 that the car emits during its use that must be taken into account, but the full balance of its cycle of life (manufacture, use, recycling) and the energy it uses. For example, an electric car using electricity produced from coal could have a less favorable CO2 balance than, for example, a conventional thermal car using fuel produced from renewable energy.
Sindelfingen already neutral
This pragmatic approach starts with the production tool: the Sindelfingen plant located a few miles from Stuttgart has already become CO2-neutral thanks to the use of renewable energy, and Mercedes announces that all its European factories will be from 2022; she from Bremen who assembles the EQC, but also the Kamenz factory where her battery is produced. Battery that Mercedes announces can already recycle 85%.
Synthetic fuels "eFuels"
In parallel, if Mercedes resolutely accelerates the electrification of its range to achieve the objectives assigned to it, with the objective that half of its sales are rechargeable electric or hybrid models by 2030, the engineers of the brand continues to explore other ways such as the hydrogen fuel cell, but also the combustion engine associated with fuels type "eFuels" that is to say produced from a renewable electricity.
Daimler's leaders therefore call on the regulatory authorities to remain neutral: it is legitimate for them to set the objectives to be attained, but not for imposing the technical solutions to achieve them, because nobody knows today which of these solutions will actually be the most successful in 20 years. On this front, Ola Källenius, current head of Mercedes' Research and Development department, and Dieter Zietsche's appointed successor at the head of Daimler's board of directors, therefore has the same positions as Carlos Tavares, chairman of the PSA Group's executive board. There is no doubt that it is gratifying that even fierce competitors in today's market can agree to defend their willingness to freely seek new technical solutions, while modestly observing that they are unable to plan today.