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Caution: boring, you may prefer to skip :unsure:

I've been wondering what's going on with EU emission regulations. There's been some discussion in the Aygo forum that the introduction of a very low emission vehicle in the Toyota range helps the company to meet an EU target of an average emission of 140g of carbon dioxide per kilometre for cars sold in the EU. Plus, the Celica and MR2 which aren't going to meet the next EU rules are getting the chop.

Obviously Citroen and Peugeot will also benefit from the C1 and 1007 as they are more or less the same car as the Aygo. But how is it that manufacturers like BMW, Porsche and Mercedes don't appear to have anything like the Aygo available and can't possibly get anywhere near 140gCO2/km for their ranges?

Turns out that the agreement the EU reached with motor manufacturers was a voluntary one. The idea was that the European Automobile Manufacturers' Association (BMW AG, DaimlerChrysler AG, Fiat S.p.A., Ford of Europe Inc., General Motors Europe AG, Dr. Ing. H.c.F. Porsche AG, PSA Peugeot Citroën, Renault SA, Volkswagen AG, AB Volvo) would aim to reach an average output of 140gCO2/km by 2008. The !Removed! (Daihatsu, Fuji Heavy Industries (Subaru), Honda, Isuzu, Mazda, Nissan, Mitsubishi, Suzuki, Toyota) and Koreans (Daewoo Motor Co. Ltd., Hyundai Motor Company, Kia Motors Corporation) are supposed to do the same by 2009.

This is supposed to work by technological change combined with more environmental buying patterns across the EU. Hence we now have cars like the Prius, better diesels and an indication of a car's CO2 output as part of the documentation of any passenger vehicle you might want to buy.

There's also a hint of financial penalties, sorry "fiscal framework measures" :D , which might also move buyers and manufacturers to the greener end of the market but nothing seems solid across the EU yet. In the UK we have varying company tax bands, for example.

From 1995 to 2002, CO2 emissions went down 10% or so. And since then, diesels have become increasingly popular so we have lost a bit more, but there's absolutely no chance of reaching the voluntary 140gCO2/km target by 2008. For a diesel, that would be somewhere around 55mpg, so a small family car maybe.

Trouble is, the commitment from different manufacturers varies widely. Toyota has the Prius and the Aygo (one of the Toyota reps at JAE claimed hybrid was the way Toyota was going in the next few years) whereas Porsche has ... er? Does Smart count as part of Mercedes, in which case that could help them out.

The EU plan following 2008 is to aim for 120gCO2/km by 2012, in time for the London Olympics. That seems to be around 60mpg for a diesel. Question is, what will happen when manufacturers completely miss the 2008/9 emissions targets? The EU seems to be threatening legislation if the voluntary agreement can't be made to stick.

I can imagine the EU trying to impose an emissions law, but the outcry from German car makers for a start would create a powerful lobby. Can't imagine they'd ever get anything through.

However, it seems a shame then that Toyota has given up the Supra, Celicas and MR2s which added considerable excitement to the brand whereas we still have the 911GT3, RS4/6, SL55 AMG etc.

For the next few years, we will still be able to buy powerful used Toyotas in good condition but those old models won't be available for ever. They aren't being made any more for a start! And it isn't just Toyota, I guess Honda fans are probably in a similar situation and the Evo 9 looks like it really will be the last one.

Not much to look forward to, then :unsure: I'm wondering if we have a few more years of happy motoring left before things start to get properly tedious.

There's some bedtime reading on this for the really keen:

Guardian article

Some stats from FOE

EU emissions report

T&E press release

EU auto industry deal (contains a typo---should be 1998)

EU CO2 emissions strategy

Euro 5 regulations

EU industry agreements, actual texts

The top 20 most and least polluting cars

Personally I think Toyota should give the EU two fingers and bring back the Supra :thumbsup:


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Interesting read there Paul thanks for that. :thumbsup:

I'm pretty frustrated by all this emission nonsense, we're never going to have cars like the MR2 turbo or whatever again and that really annoys me, seems like we all need to get sensible which I don't fancy much. :angry:

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