BRUSSELS - European Union nations on Thursday voted against the EU executive's proposal for a wifi-based car standard in a blow to its backer Volkswagen, an EU official said.

Twenty one countries - including Germany, France and Italy which have powerful auto industries - voted against the proposal at a meeting of EU representatives in Brussels from the bloc's 28 member states, the official said.

EU lawmakers in April endorsed the wifi plan over 5G technology promoted by BMW and Qualcomm.

The EU executive wants to set benchmarks for internet connected cars, a market that could generate billions of euros in revenues for carmakers, telecoms operators and equipment makers, according to analysts.

(Reporting by Foo Yun Chee Editing by Alissa de Carbonnel) ((; +32 2 287 6844; Reuters Messaging: