Porsche will decide at the end of the decade whether its latest generation of diesel engines will be its last, the first time a German carmaker has said in public it could discontinue diesel. Kate King takes a look at how long it could be before the once touted 'wonderfuel' is phased out completely.
Porsche is gearing up for a major policy change. By the end of the decade it will decide whether to ditch diesel and concentrate on the demand for more environmentally friendly vehicles. (SOUNDBITE) (English) JEREMY STRETCH, HEAD OF G10 FX STRATEGY, CIBC, SAYING: "Now we're in a scenario or we're getting very much closer to a tipping point where that proliferation of diesel technology is no longer deemed to be quite so appropriate. And I think we will see continued drives from manufacturers to look at alternative technologies." Volkswagen's emissions cheating scandal has cast a shadow over its Porsche division And as other automakers have fallen foul, it's become more than just bad advertising. The industry as a whole appears to be at a cross roads as at stares down a scenario where Diesel is dead and electric is King. Porsche is spending $1.2 billion to overhaul its Stuttgart plant in order it to introduce more emission friendly cars. Within 8-years battery only vehicles could account for a quarter of its sales. But the German Auto industry is determined to put the brakes on that. (SOUNDBITE) (German) GERMAN AUTO INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION VDA PRESIDENT, MATTHIAS WISSMANN, SAYING: "It would be a grave mistake if we renounced combustion engines because of the enthusiasm for electric mobility. There is huge potential also in the combustion engine. Just think of the entire world where we sell our cars to: not every region of the world will be able to set up an expensive charging station infrastructure." In car making powerhouse Germany, you take away diesel and you take away jobs. The IFO institute says 426- thousand would be in danger. (SOUNDBITE) (German) IFO ECONOMIC INSTITUTE PRESIDENT, CLEMENS FUEST, SAYING: "Half of the jobs in the automobile industry are connected to combustion engines. Ten percent of all industrial jobs in Germany are connected with the production of combustion engines. If that fell away it would be a great risk." But it seems the wheel is already turning. Cities in France, Spain, the Netherlands and even Germany itself, have already announced various bans on high-polluting cars. Putting consumer health, above that of manufacturers.