27 oct 20

Carmakers on track to meet CO2 emission targets

Back in 2019, emission figures suggested carmakers would face tough fines as they weren’t close to meeting the emission targets set by the European Commission. Data gathered by Jato Dynamics for 21 countries in Europe now shows a significant improvement.

Today, Volvo already meets its 95g/km target with BMW, Toyota and Hyundai following not far behind. Jato believes these carmakers can hit their individual targets relatively easily by simply changing their current mix of models and focusing on the sales of greener vehicles.

Between January and September 2020, registrations fell by 29% compared to the same period last year. At the same time, carmakers were tasked with reducing their fleet’s average CO2 emissions to avoid huge penalties.

Discontinued models

Under EU legislation, every additional gram of CO2 emitted by any registered car will result in a fine of €95. As a consequence, many OEMs have discontinued slow-selling models that contributed heavily to those averages. Suzuki has stopped offering its latest Jimny 4x4 in Europe and Mercedes-Benz announced it will stop product of most coupes and convertibles.

Discontinuing models with high emission numbers is one strategy, but carmakers have also sped up efforts to electrify their fleets. A so-called super-credit system gives manufacturers additional incentives to offer zero and low-emission vehicles that emit less than 50g/km. When calculating an OEM’s average emission levels, such vehicles count for two.

These rules will be carried over in Britain once the Brexit transition period finishes.

EV registrations

According to Jato Dynamics, the super-credit policy is a major factor influencing the growth in EV registrations. Indeed, for 27 European markets, EV registrations rose by 67% compared to the previous year. In the period January - September 2020, the share of EVs has jumped to 18.1% from 7.8% in the same period last year.

At the start of the year, PA Consulting predicted the top 13 carmakers in Europe could see fines of just under €15 billion, but these new data suggest they have made enough headway to limit or even avoid any penalties.

Image: Volvo already meets its emission targets (copyright: Volvo Cars)

Authored by: Benjamin Uyttebroeck