Congested, polluted and with car jobs at risk, Stuttgart reaches a crossroads

The city where the automobile was born has the dirtiest air in Germany – and a global drive to electric vehicles threatens its future

For the three young Porsche technicians joshing around in their tea break outside one of the carmaker’s assembly lines in Stuttgart, life seemed good last week. Like all the company’s 20,000 employees, they had just been given a bonus of €9,100 (£7,735); sales and profits were soaring; Porsche was investing €1bn in new models; and, in the sparkling southern German spring sunshine, their future as skilled craftsmen looked secure, well rewarded and full of promise.

“I am optimistic. We make the best cars and we have a good employer,” said one man. “I am young, but I have bought a house and next year I hope to buy a Porsche.”

Continue reading…

Read full original article »