Carmakers must stop complaining and meet the 2025 EU CO2 target (like they did in 2020, and profitably)

(Energy Post, 12 Apr 2024) In 2025, the EU’s car CO2 regulation will require a 15% reduction of fleet emissions from new passenger cars sold in Europe, compared to 2021 figures. But some carmakers are saying this target is unfair, claiming that they cannot control the consumers’ appetite for EVs.

They want targets relaxed or fines waived. Julia Poliscanova at T&E explains why their complaints are unwarranted for a number of reasons. Previous deadline dates show that EV sales ramp up as the new deadline approaches, with carmakers adjusting pricing and dealer incentives or tweaking model availability when they need to sell more EVs. Some carmakers only have themselves to blame for the lack of affordable EVs for the mass market, not the low appetites of consumers. And the rules have flexibility: different car firms can “pool” their total new sales CO2 value to meet the target, as Honda, JLR and Tesla did in 2022. Poliscanova also notes that a number of carmakers are quite close to the compliance target already. And that the warnings of doom that came ahead of the 2020 target proved false; instead, BEV sales jumped three times in one year while carmakers made record profits.

Back in 2019, as the first meaningful emissions targets for the car industry were about to enter force, Brussels was flooded with gloomy predictions about the astronomical fines automakers would have to pay as they weren’t able to comply.

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Energy Post, 12 Apr 2024: Carmakers must stop complaining and meet the 2025 EU CO2 target (like they did in 2020, and profitably)