I sat this morning and poured over an EU chart of diesel cars noted in Germany....as of 2015.
It's an interesting story told.
First, diesel engine cars are split into three categories....less than 1400 cc....between 1400 and 2000 cc....and then the bigger engines over 2000 cc.
Back in 2015, there were roughly 365,000 small diesel cars listed under German registration. For the mid-size engines....10,061,000 cars (a hefty number, I will admit). For the larger engine type (mostly Audi and Porsche, I would imagine)....4,106,000 cars.
This is data which leaves out the sales of 2015, 2016 and this year. You can figure at least one million cars were added to the diesel logs in this period.
So this brings me to this odd topic which may turn into the gut-wrenching topic for the remainder of 2017 and into the spring of 2018. If you read through the commentary of science geeks and engine engineers....the newer models could be helped by the software update and perhaps an added muffler-device to capture the particles that people worry about. But this geeky group start to turn skeptical when you talk about cars over five years old. Some will point out that some diesel models from five to ten years ago.....are cleaner than the crowd produced by VW in the past five years.
The anti-diesel crowd and the news media? All going toward a total ban.
So, let's start the topic. You have an excessive amount of money sitting in the German tax revenue pocket. Back a decade ago....Germany ran the famous "cash-for-clunkers" program, and took off hundreds of thousands of older vehicles from the roads of Germany. Why not a "cash-for-diesels" program?
You offer two simple deals. The diesel owners can get up to 4,000 Euro to convert their vehicles to LPG gas models, or get the blue-book value of the car (meaning the car is crushed). Some will suggest that you could convert the cars over from diesel to regular gas....but generally, the experts say that performance never matches up to the former diesel engine, and that this isn't a practical experience with lots of experts who've done this.
Cost? Tens of billions.
After you've done all of this (figure at least two years for everyone to reach stage 'zero')....you'd have clean cities and no ban.
The angry crowd? Oh....those folks who started this whole ban topic....who are frustrated that you gave away free money from the German government pot of revenue.
The remaining issue? When foreign vehicles enter Germany.....how will you handle the diesel car episode? A French guy with a diesel car visiting for two weeks to Bavaria?
How many folks would take the LPG gas conversion versus the entire switch to regular gas? Unknown. If I had a high performance diesel car with a engine larger than 2000 cc....I'd likely go this direction rather than getting a new car.
Odds of this idea being picked up? Zero. Just from the political folks alone....there would be zero interest in handing out billions for this deal. Oddly, it'd mean the end of diesel car manufacturing for the German companies, and they'd have to crank out tons of cars to the people standing there with cash in their hands.