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More and more car owners want to sell their diesel engines

Friday, August 25th, 2017 | World News

The debate about the diesel and the threat of driving bans are becoming more and more important for car demand. According to a survey conducted by the branch service provider Deutsche Automobil Treuhand (DAT), 29 percent of the surveyed diesel drivers claimed to want to leave their car as quickly as possible in order to avoid driving bans or imminent losses.

This is four percentage points more than in the previous survey in June. The share of those who postponed their car cars to wait for further development had increased to 28 (June: 24) percent, the DAT said on Thursday.

The topic of driving bans does not seem to come off the table even with the voluntary retrofitting of diesel cars by the manufacturers: The German environmental aid (DUH) announced complaints against 45 additional cities from Kiel to Augsburg due to excessive air pollution. DUH's success in front of the administrative courts of Munich and Stuttgart made diesel driving bans, which deter car makers from the self-starter, within reach. In court, however, the last word has not yet been spoken.

  For the "Diesel Barometer", a representative sample of 1042 online interviews with end-users conducted between 4 and 9 August were evaluated on behalf of DAT. Thus, despite the uncertainty so far, no mass cessation from the diesel stands out. The vast majority of 71 percent of the car owners questioned saw no reason for panic sales, the DAT reported.

The time when used diesel cars on the dealers' yards were reduced by one day. Used diesel cars therefore sold after 94 days, gasoline after 78 days. This should also have been accompanied by price reductions by the dealers. The maximum for this year was 99 days in February and May.

 Car dealers see the situation critically
Despite the slight relaxation, the car dealers still see the situation critical. According to a calculation by the Central Association of the German Motor Vehicle Industry (ZDK), currently 300,000 used diesel engines with the Euro 5 standard with a total value of around 4.5 billion euros are available at the dealers' yards. "We need clear signals from the policy as to how it will continue," says ZDK Vice President Thomas Peckruhn, "the uncertainty among consumers will rise just as much as the price pressure on the Euro 5 diesel.

The ZDK requires manufacturers to retrofit older diesel cars at their own expense not only by software, but also the engine hardware. The carers reject it. Many cars with Euro 5 standard are still relatively young, they were built by 2014.

Falling residual values
According to DAT, the uncertainty also affects the vehicle values. However, the value loss is still limited. While gasoline cars were still worth 56.2 (56.4) percent of the list price after an average of three years, the vehicle values ​​of comparable diesel cars fell from 55.2 to 54.9 percent.

In the case of declining residual values, the vehicle financers in the leasing business have to make higher provision. As a precautionary measure, Volkswagen's financial division had previously accumulated extraordinary write-downs in the first half of the year to 141 (previous year: 93) million euros, the majority of which was accounted for by diesel vehicles.

At the same time, experts see the consequences for customers as well as for manufacturers. The declining demand for cars with diesel engines pushes the resale values ​​and thus increases the leasing. "The important fleet business is in a state of upheaval," said Cedric Perlewitz, a car expert at Commerzbank. This would require the car manufacturers to speed up the process of change to electric mobility.

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