The European Union is imposing more stringent regulations as part of a plan to reduce CO2 emissions by 20% in 2015. This makes it much tougher for automakers that are already struggling to meet the current standards. Beginning on Jan. 1, 2012, about 65% of the total number of cars sold each year in Europe by every automaker will have to emit less than 130 grams per kilometer.
Notably, only automakers that produce more than 10,000 cars annually have to abide by this law. If automakers can’t meet these rules, a fine of 5€ ($6.50) per gram that each car is over will have to be paid.
In just one year, this may add up to millions. It’s believed that Dacia, which is owned by Renault, would be paying a huge fine at the end of 2012.
Daimler is expected to be one of the automakers affected the most by the tougher rules. Daimler has had a difficult time of decreasing its CO2 emissions levels. If it fails to take drastic measures now, it would have to pay a fine of 1,900€ (nearly $2,500) for each car when the new standards take effect.
Of course, producers of small cars aren’t expected to have any trouble in meeting the new norms. In 2011, about 2/3 of the cars built by Peugeot and Citroën did not go over 119 grams per kilometer.
Fiat’s CO2 emissions level averages 115 grams while Toyota’s figure is at 112 grams. Lawmakers claim that its goal to lower CO2 emissions has been successful. In the year 2006, the average new car sold in Europe had CO2 emissions of 161 grams per kilometer but in 2011, this has fallen to 137 grams. [source: LeftLaneNews]