Analyses
2 nov 23

Euro 7: Europe towards a Sustainable Car Market

The proposal for Euro 7 emissions standards were unveiled In November 2022 by the European Commission (Press conference by Thierry BRETON, European Commissioner for Internal Market on modernised limits of non-CO2 emissions for vehicles (Euro 7 standards) in Brussels, Belgium on Nov. 10, 2022), and set to apply to all light and heavy-duty vehicles within the European Union.

This initiative represents a significant leap forward in efforts to combat air pollution, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and improve the environmental impact of vehicles on European roads. This article explores the key aspects of the Euro 7 proposal, its objectives, and its potential impact on the automotive industry and the environment.

Euro 7 Proposal Overview

The Euro 7 proposal is a comprehensive regulatory framework that builds on its predecessors, Euro 6 and Euro VI, aimed at reducing emissions from vehicles on European roads. The proposal encompasses both light-duty and heavy-duty vehicles, ensuring a unified approach across all vehicle categories. The key features of the Euro 7 proposal are as follows:

  1. Stricter Emission Requirements: Euro 7 introduces more stringent emissions requirements compared to the existing Euro 6 and Euro VI standards. These requirements apply to all vehicles, regardless of their fuel source, be it gasoline, diesel, electric powertrains, or alternative fuels.
  2. Elimination of Redundant Tests: Redundant emission tests have been removed to streamline the assessment process. Emissions will be measured through both laboratory tests and on-road evaluations, with real driving emissions tests no longer relying on conformity factors due to the increasing accuracy of portable emissions measurement systems (PEMS).
  3. Durability Enhancements: The Euro 7 standards reflect the average expected lifetime of vehicles in the EU. This ensures that emissions controls remain effective throughout the vehicle's operational life.
  4. Tyre and Brake Emissions: Euro 7 sets limits on the particles emitted by tires and brakes, acknowledging the growing importance of non-exhaust emissions, which are projected to constitute a significant portion of road transport emissions by 2050.
  5. Battery Durability: Minimum performance requirements for battery durability are introduced for plug-in hybrid and electric light-duty vehicles. This move seeks to ensure the longevity and sustainability of electric vehicle components.
  6. On-Board Monitoring (OBM): The proposal mandates the installation of an OBM system in vehicles, allowing continuous emissions monitoring. This requirement is in addition to existing on-board diagnostics (OBD) and on-board fuel and energy consumption monitoring (OBFCM) devices.

Implementation Dates

The Euro 7 standards are scheduled to be phased in over several years, with the following implementation dates:

  • From July 1, 2025: Euro 7 standards apply to category M1 and N1 vehicles.
  • From July 1, 2027: Euro 7 standards are extended to all other vehicle categories.
  • For small volume manufacturers, the requirements come into effect from July 1, 2030. Small volume manufacturers are those producing fewer than 10,000 category M1 vehicles or fewer than 22,000 category N1 vehicles per year.

Emission Requirements

The Euro 7 proposal defines a set of ambitious emissions limits for various pollutants. Notable highlights include:

  • Extending ammonia (NH3) emissions limits to light-duty vehicles, with current NH3 limits applicable only to heavy-duty vehicles.
  • Regulating formaldehyde (HCHO) and nitrous oxide emissions for lorries and buses.
  • Introducing limits for particles with a diameter greater than 10 nm, which is more stringent than the current requirements.
  • The proposal outlines emissions limits for various pollutants, such as NOx, PM, PN10, CO, THC, NMHC, NH3, CH4, and N2O, for different vehicle categories and under both cold and hot emissions conditions.

Conclusion

The Euro 7 emissions standards proposal is a significant step forward in Europe's commitment to reducing vehicle emissions and improving air quality. By introducing more stringent requirements, addressing non-exhaust emissions, and promoting the durability and sustainability of electric vehicles, this initiative sets a new benchmark for the automotive industry. With phased implementation, it provides manufacturers and stakeholders time to adapt and innovate. Euro 7 not only reflects Europe's dedication to environmental protection but also paves the way for a cleaner and more sustainable future on European roads.

Picture Credit: Shutterstock 2224915515

Authored by: Yves Helven