The internal combustion engine is getting put out to pasture as vehicle manufacturers focus on greener alternatives.
The latest to join that trend: Daimler, the German car manufacturer.
Daimler has no plans to develop next-generation combustion engine
In an interview with German magazine Auto Motor und Sport, Markus Schaefer, the development head at the car company said there are no plans to develop a next-generation combustion engine as the company focuses on electric powertrains. The executive did acknowledge Daimler could still develop parts for the combustion engine to improve upon the existing engines.
Schaefer told the magazine that the main developmental focuses are now on electric drives and developing batteries. That's not to say Daimler is abandoning combustion engines. The engine will be found in its E and S Class vehicles and its SUVs.
VW is phasing out the combustion engine too
Daimler isn't the only vehicle maker that is eventually saying goodbye to the combustion engine. In late December German rival, Volkswagen said it will develop the last generation of vehicles that are powered by a combustion engine in 2026.
“In the year 2026 will be the last product start on a combustion engine platform,” Michael Jost, chief strategist at VW said at the time.
The moves on the part of the vehicle makers come at a time when interest in electric cars is growing. While it's still a small portion of vehicle sales, advances in technology and increased focus on the part of the traditional vehicle manufacturers are boosting interest. As it stands, Tesla is the undisputed leader in the EV marketplace.
For the first six months of this year, the California New Car Dealers Association reported the number of electric and hybrid vehicles sold jumped 63.7% with Tesla's Model 3 accounting for 33,000 or the 51,750 sold. Consumers in the country's largest electric vehicle market also purchased the Chevrolet Bolt EV, the Tesla Model X, Tesla Model S and Nissan Leaf during the time period.
BMW isn't ready to say goodbye to combustion engines
One carmaker that isn't putting the combustion engine out to pasture anytime soon is BMW. The company recently said it will continue to invest in internal combustion engines for the foreseeable future. They plan to phase out diesel engines during the next 20 years and petrol engines over the next 30 years.
“We see areas without a recharging infrastructure such as Russia, the Middle East and the western, internal part of China so they will rely on gasoline engines for another 10 to 15 years,” Klaus Froelich, BMW Group board member for development, told Automotive News Europe at the company's NextGen event in Munich in June.