2035 is the key date set by the European Union to mark the end of internal combustion vehicles in the European market. From then on, all manufacturers must have a 100% electric range, and vehicles with combustion engines, including hybrids, will no longer be able to be marketed.
As we have already seen in recent months, the vast majority of manufacturers have announced their transformation to be 100% electric brands even before that year, a complicated transition, but one that they will surely be able to meet thanks to the economies of scale of their companies. But what about low-volume manufacturers? Its low number of units and exclusivity, its independence from large companies in many cases and it's 100% sporty DNA make this transformation much more complex and less profitable than in brands with high production volumes, and such a rapid transformation could put in doubt even his future.
Italy goes out to protect its jewels
That is why Italy, the birthplace of the main supercar companies such as Ferrari or Lamborghini, has decided to seek an exemption for these types of brands so that after 2035 they can continue to offer some models with combustion engines.
Aware that the EU proposal is still open to exceptions and changes, the Italian government is in talks with Brussels to achieve this kind of extension, as reported by Bloomberg. As they explain, the government of Rome insists that it is committed to the objective of reducing harmful emissions by eliminating the most polluting engines, even in the supercar sector, which is why they are looking for a way to apply special rules for these niche manufacturers whose production volume and sales are much lower than in general brands.
This extension with special conditions for of course to continue innovating not only with increasingly efficient and less polluting engines, for example with the use of synthetic fuels but also in batteries, with high-performance models that are profitable and lightweight. That is why the transalpine country also wants to promote a program to create a new gigafactory capable of offering these key components on a large scale.
An acceptable proposal?
As we say, the proposal to end combustion cars in 2035 throughout Europe is still in the study phase and not only Italy is presenting its own corrections to the plan, with France for example requesting to extend the life of hybrid vehicles some more time.
In any case, the percentage that supercars represent in the total European fleet is so minimal that many consider this proposal totally feasible. Ferrari sold a total of 9,100 vehicles in 2020 and Lamborghini about 7,400, insignificant figures compared to the millions of cars that generalist brands drive each year.
However, both Maranello and Sant'Agata Bolognese must accelerate a transformation towards electricity that they started later than other rivals such as Porsche. Each currently has two hybrid models in its range currently, two of them - Ferrari 296 GTB and Lamborghini Countach - practically newly introduced but not yet released. To see a 100% electric model in these two brands we will have to wait until 2025. And these are only the two most powerful brands in this exclusive club, but what will happen to totally independent manufacturers like Pagani? Only time will tell.