New CO2 targets for trucks must be ‘achievable in practice’ cautions industry

Brussels, 5 February 2019 – Ahead of next week’s final EU negotiations on CO2 standards for trucks, the European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association (ACEA) reiterates its support for a timely agreement on this regulation. At the same time, ACEA cautions policy makers that these first-ever CO2 targets will only be achievable if they are accompanied by the right package of measures to address the structural challenges faced by truck makers and operators alike.

“Over the past years, ACEA members have worked hard to drive down CO2 emissions from trucks, and of course remain fully committed to continue doing so,” stated ACEA Secretary General, Erik Jonnaert. “When finalising these new standards, however, it is essential that decision makers take into account the long investment cycles of truck manufacturers, the low operating margins of transport operators, as well as the absence of charging and refuelling infrastructure for alternatively-powered trucks.”

Indeed, delivering on the extremely ambitious truck CO2 targets proposed for 2025 and 2030 is only possible if customer uptake of zero- and low-emission trucks increases drastically within just a few years. Despite this, recent data shows that there is not one single public charging point suitable for electric or hydrogen trucks available in the EU today, nor is there is a clear action plan for the roll-out of this infrastructure in the near future.

In addition, ACEA believes that meaningful incentives to promote the early adoption of zero- and low-emission trucks are essential. The industry therefore supports the incentive mechanism proposed by the European Commission, which should be maintained at least until 2030.

However, the introduction of mandatory sales quotas (via a ‘benchmark’ system, as proposed by the European Parliament) would be extremely risky for Europe’s truck industry. Dictating to manufacturers that they must produce a certain amount of zero-emission vehicles will not guarantee that market uptake will follow, especially given the lack of infrastructure as well as other obstacles – such as loss of payload and limited range.

Jonnaert: “What we are calling for as part of this regulation is an effective framework of supportive measures for both manufacturers and truck operators to ensure that the ambitious CO2 targets that are soon to be adopted will prove to be achievable in practice.”

During their ‘trilogue’ meeting next week, representatives of the European Parliament, national governments and the European Commission are expected to strike a final deal on this important dossier.

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Notes for editors

  • The European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association (ACEA) is the Brussels-based trade association of the 15 major car, van, truck and bus producers in Europe.
  • The ACEA commercial vehicle members are DAF Trucks, Daimler Trucks, IVECO, MAN Truck & Bus, Scania, Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles, and Volvo Group.
  • More information can be found on www.acea.be or @ACEA_eu.
  • Contact: Cara McLaughlin, Communications Director, cm@acea.be, +32 2 738 73 45 or +32 485 88 66 47.

About the EU automobile industry

  • 13.3 million people – or 6.1% of the EU employed population – work directly and indirectly in the sector.
  • The 3.4 million jobs in automotive manufacturing represent over 11% of total EU manufacturing employment.
  • Motor vehicles account for some €413 billion in tax contributions in the EU15.
  • The sector is also a key driver of knowledge and innovation, representing Europe's largest private contributor to R&D, with €54 billion invested annually.
  • The automobile industry generates a trade surplus of €90.3 billion for the EU.