German carmakers have 50:50 chance of facing Detroit’s fate, VW says


By Edward Taylor

FRANKFURT (Reuters) – German carmakers only have a 50 percent chance of surviving as leading players in the auto industry unless they transform their businesses to meet new regulations and adapt supply chains, Volkswagen’s (DE:VOWG_p) chief executive said on Tuesday.

Car manufacturers have complained about new regulations, including bans on older diesel vehicles in German cities and broader EU measures to cut car emissions, saying they will hurt Europe’s car industry and cost jobs.

“If you look at the former bastions of the auto industry like Detroit, Oxford-Cowley or Turin, you understand what happens to cities when once-powerful corporations and leading industries falter,” CEO Herbert Diess told an auto suppliers’ conference in Wolfsburg, VW’s manufacturing base.

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