Officials in Brussels are drawing up legislation to limt the average carbon-dioxide emissions of new vehicles sold in Europe after 2012 to 130g/km. Some of today’s small cars with diesel engines fall under the 130g/km limit, but today’s average is just below 160g/km.
Manufacturers such as Mercedes-Benz and BMW have few cars below 180g/km. It is estimated that the engine modifications and other measures required to meet the new regulations will increase the price of the average car by £970.
Reconciling the makers of small cars such as Fiat, Citroen and Peugeot with the luxury car makers is proving to be a difficult task. The European Automobile Manufacturers Association (ACEA) said its members (including Germany’s premium car manufacturers) supported the EC’s ultimate aim for a 120g/km carbon-dioxide average but at a later date (2015 at the earliest).
This would allow for the Motor Industry’s development lead times to be taken into consideration. In addition the new regulations would need to be part of an integrated approach including improved road infrastructure, education in economical driving, the use of bio-fuels, and the wider adoption of taxes on carbon-dioxide emissions. These measures, the carmakers argue, were more cost-effective than introducing increasingly complex vehicle technology.