25 August 2016
Reducing CO2 emissions from passenger cars
Cars are responsible for around 12% of total EU emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2), the main greenhouse gas.
EU legislation sets mandatory emission reduction targets for new cars. This legislation is the cornerstone of the EU's strategy to improve the fuel economy of cars sold on the European market. Similar targets have been set for new vans.
The law requires that the new cars registered in the EU do not emit more than an average of 130 grams of CO2 per kilometre (g CO2/km) by 2015.
This means a fuel consumption of around 5.6 litres per 100 km (l/100 km) of petrol or 4.9 l/100 km of diesel.
The average emissions level of a new car sold in 2014 was 123.4 g CO2/km (provisional data), well below the 2015 target. Since monitoring started under current legislation in 2010, emissions have decreased by 17 g CO2/km (12 %).
By 2021, phased in from 2020, the fleet average to be achieved by all new cars is 95 grams of CO2 per kilometre.
This means a fuel consumption of around 4.1 l/100 km of petrol or 3.6 l/100 km of diesel.
The 2015 and 2021 targets represent reductions of 18% and 40% respectively compared with the 2007 fleet average of 158.7g/km