EU sets stricter CO2 limits for new cars

The EU has again approved the introduction of significantly tougher limits for CO2 emissions by 2030. The emissions levels of new cars are to be 37.5 percent lower in 2030 compared to 2021. The car industry has criticised the new rules. Commentators see the manufacturers' complaints about the move as the usual lobbying, but also call for more financial incentives for eco-friendly vehicles.

Open/close all quotes (DE) /

Sector's wailing uncalled for

The German government has made a fool of itself before the entire EU, comments

“Because Germany wanted to settle for the clearly weaker proposal of the EU Commission - leaving it once again looking like the one that puts up obstacles. As so often is the case when it comes to the interests of the automotive industry. Because it's clear what the latter thinks about the evening's agreement. Namely that it's not a good outcome. The sector criticises the targets as completely unrealistic, is worried about its international competitiveness and sees jobs at risk. So the usual scenario. Wailing and gnashing of teeth. Typical lobbyist business tactics. When the catalytic converter was introduced it was the same.”

The Times (GB) /

Little incentive left to switch to e-cars

The plan simply won't work without financial incentives for consumers, The Times warns:

“The decline of government subsidies for green vehicles and a cut in the grant for pure electric cars from £4,500 to £3,500, mean that electric cars are more costly in Britain than in most other European nations. In countries where the incentives to go electric are more generous, notably France and Germany, take-up has been quicker. In Britain hybrid cards, which run on a mix of petrol or diesel and an electric battery, no longer qualify for the grant at all. In a market in which consumers are extremely sensitive to price, this is a significant cut.”

Die Presse (AT) /

Fewer SUV monsters would be a good start

The car industry bears at least part of the blame for the fact that the stricter limits to CO2 emissions are difficult to fulfil, Die Presse criticises:

“The CO2 requirements would be significantly easer to meet if the focus were on more reasonably-sized cars with reasonably-sized engines rather than sexy SUV mega-horsepower monsters with drag coefficients akin to those of living room cabinets. But you have to serve the market that you've created. Even with electric cars, the announced range of models Germany would have on offer is composed for the time being of huge vehicles with several hundred horsepower. Common sense and cars tend not to go hand in hand.”