According to a study, companies rely more on e-cars than private owners. Every seventh car in company fleets last year was an electric car (7 percent) or a plug-in hybrid (8 percent), according to the climate barometer of the state development bank KfW.

For private owners, the rate was 0.9 or 1.4 percent. “Companies and their vehicle fleets play a key role in the decarbonization of transport,” explained KfW chief economist Fritzi Köhler-Geib.

20 percent of greenhouse gases come from traffic

In Germany, around 20 percent of climate-damaging greenhouse gases are produced in the transport sector. Motorized road traffic accounts for 98 percent of this.

In the area of ​​company cars, the development is going in the right direction. “Battery-electric vehicles have so far only played a minor role in commercial vehicles,” said Köhler-Geib. The KfW suspects the later technical availability of e-commercial vehicles, high acquisition costs and a hardly existing high-performance charging infrastructure for heavy road transport to be the reasons.

Two thirds of all new passenger car registrations in trade

According to the information, more than two thirds of all new car registrations are accounted for by commercial owners. According to the KfW survey, companies in the service sector are ahead by a nose, where 7 or 9 percent of the car fleet is operated purely electrically or as a plug-in hybrid. Company cars from construction companies and from the transport and warehousing sector only account for 5 percent each for e-cars and 4 and 7 percent for plug-in hybrids. Transport and logistics companies in particular could make a significant contribution. Their fleet is usually larger than average and the vehicles are used more intensively, it said.

According to Köhler-Geib, costs play a major role in company decisions. “Companies consider purchasing an energy-efficient and climate-friendly vehicle if its cost-effectiveness compared to other types of drive is given in the long term,” said the economist. “With suitable measures, politicians can create appropriate incentives and make progress in the decarbonization of road traffic.”

Regulations favor large company cars

According to the study, companies tend more than private individuals to own plug-in hybrids and large and more energy-intensive cars, whose climate impact is controversial. This should also be related to tax regulations for company cars, it said. The regulations favored the use of plug-in hybrids in combustion mode and the purchase of larger company cars.

Federal Environment Agency on total emissions by sector KfW study