The UK new car market saw sales-weighted average CO2 emissions fall 3.6% from 2012 to 128.3g/km in 2013. This was the first time emissions fell below the 130g/km set as the pan-European 2012-2015 target.
It continues the striking long term trend in performance improvement evident since 2008 say SMMT. The performance results from huge investment in advanced low CO2-emitting technologies and is influenced by consumers’ increasing prioritisation of improved fuel efficiency in their purchasing decisions.
2013 also saw the registration of record numbers of alternatively-fuelled cars. While petrol and diesel models are becoming more fuel-efficient, in the longer-term the switch to alternatively-fuelled vehicles will be necessary to achieve increasingly challenging CO2 targets for 2020 of just 95g/km.
Environmental regulations, motoring taxation and consumer information will play an important role in enabling industry to deliver even more efficient models and encouraging consumers to adopt them.
SMMT has welcomed the government’s ongoing support to accelerate the uptake of ultra-low emitting models, with an additional £500 million investment secured. The recently-launched ‘Go Ultra Low’ campaign (see www.goultralow.com) shows how government and industry are working together to promote the advantages of ultra-low emission vehicles and educate consumers about the feasibility and benefits of such vehicles.