FRANKFURT -- Continental CEO Elmar Degenhart has called for political support for diesel cars in the face of increasing driving bans.
Several German cities, including Frankfurt, are preparing to ban older Euro 4 and Euro 5 diesel vehicles that emit higher amounts of pollutants following a landmark ruling by Germany's top administrative court in February that opened the door to inner-city bans.
But the latest generation of Euro 6 diesel cars is clean, Degenhart told journalists. "This is a statement that must come from politicians."
It is a "tragedy that diesel is dead politically," he said, noting the latest technology has allowed for cleaner diesel engines.
Degenhart also said Continental would decide whether to produce battery cells independent of any possible government subsidies.
The company will only proceed with production in tandem with partners experienced in electrochemicals and will make a decision after 2020, he said.