22 Aug 18

WLTP D-day nears: it’s bargain time

The end of August has everything to become an automotive Black Friday. Just 10 days before WLTP becomes mandatory, most new cars still have to be re-homologated. In short: on September 1st 2018, new vehicles that do not carry a WLTP type approval can no longer be sold in the EU – with the exception of “end of series” models.

An Autovista Group survey revealed that 29 percent of OEM respondents fear this will be a severe issue. VW is allegedly looking for parking lots to store vehicles while it figures out what to do with them. For consumers who are not too fussy about options, trim and colours, there are indeed some good deals to be found. That holds all the more true for diesel cars in the B and C segment, which have almost entirely fallen from grace.

Three kinds of NEDC stock cars

If you need a new car, there are two options: either you order one, which will be WLTP-homologated, or you take a NEDC-homologated stock vehicle. There are three scenarios for the latter:

  1. The model is relatively new, i.e. not “end of series”. In that case it can only be sold as “new” until September 1st 2018, increasing the pressure on any stock left.
  2. Non-"end of series" NEDC stock that is not sold on August 31st. These cars have to be preregistered by OEMs, making them "pre-owned" and thereby slicing a few percent off their value, while nothing changes to the cars as such. They still have zero kilometres on the odometer.
  3. The model is “end of series”. OEMs can request an exception (derogation) for a volume that equals 10 percent of their total sales volume of last year. Cars that are on this derogation list can keep their NEDC type approval, but they must be sold before September 1st 2019.

Regardless of the scenario, NEDC stock vehicles will be offered at attractive prices and could be a solution if you are not too picky and need a car fast. As a matter of fact, you could be in for an unpleasant surprise if you want to order a new, i.e. WLTP one.

Car makers are facing production bottlenecks and suspension for WLTP cars. Some models are even withdrawn from sale – either temporarily or permanently. If you order a new car now, it will take a lot longer for it to roll off the production line – if it rolls off the line at all. In many cases, early 2019 is the best you can hope for.

Pros and cons

Are there any risks to consider when buying a NEDC car? If you are leasing, these risks are borne by the lessor. If you buy your cars, chances are the residual value of a NEDC stock vehicle are lower than that of a WLTP vehicle. That is not because of WLTP, but the fact that the new type-approval method is associated with the Real Driving Emissions (RDE) test – and thereby compliance with the Euro 6d-temp emission standard.

That being said, a NEDC-homologated car will most probably have a lower CO2 rating than its WLTP-successor. The latter's CO2 emissions are back-translated to a correlated NEDC value, but this proves to be on average 10 g/km higher than the old NED value. In conclusion: the lower RV of a NEDC car could well be offset by lower taxes.

To get the gist of WLTP, NEDC and NEDC correlated, watch our videos "WLTP: 7 answers & 7 questions" plus " WLTP, NEDC, NEDC correlated, RDE - what is it all about?"

Authored by: Dieter Quartier