France has announced it will join a growing list of countries planning the demise of the internal combustion engine. The European nation announced Thursday it plans to ban the sale of all gasoline and diesel powered vehicles in the country by year 2040.
The announcement announcement was made by France’s environmental minister, Nicolas Hulot. Hulot referred to the planned ban as “a very difficult objective” for automakers, but noted that the technology exists to make it a reality. Despite France’s perceived aggressive with this ban, it isn’t as aggressive as other countries’ plan to ditch internal combustion engines.
Norway has announced plans to sell exclusively electric vehicles in its country by 2025, India is targeting 2030 for the same goal. Germany has also planned to sell one million electric vehicles in its country by 2020, a goal it has already admitted it will fall short of reaching.
Much like the other countries announcing similar plans, France has been vague on details of their ban. For example, it isn’t yet known if the country will ban all hybrid vehicles from sale in the country by 2040. It also isn’t clear how the country plans to build out the necessary electrical grid or hydrogen fueling station infrastructure needed to support their dream fleet.
Another loose end in this plan is how the country will provide assistance to poorer citizens who rely on vehicles, given the new propulsion technology will likely boost sticker prices.
Compounding announcements such as France’s is automaker announcements. France announced their planned ban the same week Swedish automaker Volvo announced that every vehicle the brand launched from 2019 forward will be electrified in some capacity, with the ultimate goal of achieving an all-electric fleet in the future.
Other European automakers have announced sales goals for electric vehicles, such as Volkswagen AG. That said, France’s own automakers have yet to officially comment on their home country’s announcement.