Daimler

InfluenceMap Score
D
Performance Band
51%
Organisation Score
42%
Relationship Score
Modifications to InfluenceMap Scoring
Sector:
Automotive
Head​quarters:
Stuttgart, Germany
Brands and Associated Companies
Mercedes Benz, Smart Cars, AMG, Freight Liner
Official Web Site:
Wikipedia:

Climate Lobbying Overview: Daimler has actively engaged on climate policy in the EU and United States, and appears to have become more positive in its lobbying since 2018, particularly around its engagement with the EU CO2 standards for new vehicles and measures to support the uptake of zero-emissions vehicles. However, Daimler appears to have maintained regressive positions on US CAFE standards and also holds memberships of a number of highly negative industry associations in the EU and the United States.

Top-line Messaging on Climate Policy: The company is supportive of efforts to limit emissions in line with the targets set out by the IPCC, stating on its website in July 2020 that “If we want to limit the rise in the global average temperature to a maximum of 2 degrees Celsius, or better still, 1.5 degrees Celsius, we have to accelerate decarbonization.” Daimler also appears to support the Paris Agreement, with Daimler CEO Ola Kallenius stating in a May 2019 LinkedIn post that “To us the Paris Agreement is more than an obligation – it’s our conviction.” Daimler has indicated broad support for government regulation to support the decarbonization of transportation, but has urged governments to “fix the target, but not the means to achieve it”, suggesting that the company does not support more stringent forms of regulation to implement government decarbonization ambition in the transport sector.

Engagement with Climate-Related Regulations: Daimler has opposed stringent CO2 standards for vehicles in the EU, although with some improvement in this position over time. Throughout 2018 Daimler opposed the EU’s CO2 standards for trucks, calling proposed reductions of 20 per cent by 2025 and 35 per cent by 2030 in relation to base year 2019 “beyond what is technically and economically feasible” and arguing for less stringent targets. Daimler maintained this position into 2019, with Manfred Schuckert, head of commercial vehicle emissions and safety at Daimler, calling the targets “over-ambitious” at the presentation of Daimler’s annual results in March 2019. Evidence also suggests that Daimler remained unsupportive of EU CO2 standards for light vehicles as late as 2018, with then CEO Dieter Zesche emphasizing the difficulty in meeting the rules due to lack of demand for electric vehicles in a January 2018 Financial Times interview. However, there is some evidence that Daimler has positioned more positively on EU CO2 standards for vehicles more recently, with the company stating that it is ‘committed’ to the standards on its website, and indicating that it would not argue for the targets to be delayed in response to the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020. Daimler appeared to take an unclear position on proposed increased EU CO2 standards for vehicles as part of the EU Fit for 55 package in July 2021, with their development chief stating to the media that the targets are "very, very ambitious ... it's not unrealistic, but it will require a major restructuring of society".

In the US, Daimler supported the weakening of federal CAFE standards in a October 2018 comment to the EPA and NHTSA, arguing that Obama era standards were set too high. In it’s 2020 CDP response Daimler indicated its preference for an agreement between California and Federal Regulators on CAFE standards, although does not appear to have supported the August 2019 compromise deal on emissions between California and other automakers, suggesting a further reduction in the stringency of California's CAFE regulations was supported by the company.

Daimler signalled in a 2019 press release that it is “open to a discussion on effective CO2 pricing.” Specifically, Daimler CEO Ola Kallenius has spoken in favour of a carbon tax, stating in an interview in January of 2020 that “Ideally, that tax should be universal, tradable and universal across industries. That would be the most economically and resource-efficient way of solving problems of CO2.”

Positioning on Energy Transition: Since 2018 Daimler has expressed broad support for the decarbonization of transport. In November 2020 Daimler welcomed the launch of Germany’s policy package to shift to low emissions vehicles, with Daimler CEO Ola Kallenius describing the package as "exactly right." The company has also argued for hydrogen fuel cell vehicles to play a part in the decarbonization of transport, and has advocated for measures to support this including expanded hydrogen infrastructure. However, it should also be noted that, in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Daimler supported a broad based scrappage premium to boost demand for new vehicles in Germany, effectively subsidizing ICE vehicles. Furthermore, according to the Financial Times, Kallenius supported the ending of the COVID-19 related stimulus for electric vehicles in November 2020.

Industry Association Governance: Daimler publicly discloses its memberships of a number of trade associations in a dedicated disclosure in it’s annual sustainability report, but it does not provide any further details of the company's role within each organization's governing bodies nor influence over their climate change policy positions. Daimler has not conducted an audit of it’s trade association memberships. Daimler is a member of a number of groups which have maintained regressive policies on climate policy including the US Chamber of Commerce, National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) and Federation of German Industries (BDI). Daimler’s CEO Ola Kallenius also maintains board positions with the German Automotive Association (VDA) and European Automobile Manufacturers Association (ACEA).

QUERIES
DATA SOURCES
Main Web Site Social Media CDP Responses Legislative Consultations Media Reports CEO Messaging Financial Disclosures
Communication of Climate Science
2 1 NS NS NS NS NS
Alignment with IPCC on Climate Action
1 1 NA NS NS 0 NS
Supporting the Need for Regulations
NS 1 NS -1 NS 0 NS
Support of UN Climate Process
0 1 NS -1 NS 1 NS
Transparency on Legislation
-1 NA -1 NA NA NA NS
Carbon Tax
NS NS NS NS 1 1 NS
Emissions Trading
NS NS NS -2 1 1 NS
Energy and Resource Efficiency
0 NS -1 -2 -1 0 NS
Renewable Energy
NS NS NS -1 NS NS NS
Energy Transition & Zero Carbon Technologies
1 1 NS 1 1 0 NS
GHG Emission Regulation
0 0 1 1 0 1 1
Disclosure on Relationships
0 NS -1 NA NA NA NS
Strength of Relationship
STRONG
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
WEAK
 
67%
 
67%
 
49%
 
49%
 
27%
 
27%
 
42%
 
42%
 
36%
 
36%
 
44%
 
44%
 
36%
 
36%
 
60%
 
60%
 
26%
 
26%
 
49%
 
49%
 
40%
 
40%

How to Read our Relationship Score Map

In this section, we depict graphically the relationships the corporation has with trade associations, federations, advocacy groups and other third parties who may be acting on their behalf to influence climate change policy. Each of the columns above represents one relationship the corporation appears to have with such a third party. In these columns, the top, dark section represents the strength of the relationship the corporation has with the influencer. For example if a corporation's senior executive also held a key role in the trade association, we would deem this to be a strong relationship and it would be on the far left of the chart above, with the weaker ones to the right. Click on these grey shaded upper sections for details of these relationships. The middle section contains a link to the organization score details of the influencer concerned, so you can see the details of its climate change policy influence. Click on the middle sections for for details of the trade associations. The lower section contains the organization score of that influencer, the lower the more negatively it is influencing climate policy.