New European emissions standards accelerate the race for electric vehicles

With the Euro 7 measures expected to be introduced in the next few years, automakers are turning to electric vehicles (EVs) as internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles become less viable for the future European car market. Several European automakers have already introduced a range of electric vehicle models, aiming for electric vehicles to make up a high proportion of their sales by 2030. Now Asian companies are eyeing the European market for electric vehicle sales, as new regulations are expected to significantly restrict the sale of traditional vehicles. fuel vehicles.

Throughout 2021 and 2022, the EU is tackling pollution caused by vehicles on European roads to introduce a new emission standard called Euro 7 in 2025. Air pollution is responsible for hundreds of thousands of premature deaths each year, as well as being linked to several diseases. . However, this shift comes largely in response to the COP26 climate conference held last November where several European countries committed to net zero carbon emissions.

Greenhouse gas emissions from road transport in Europe are estimated to be more than 600 million tons of CO2 in 2020. The introduction of new Euro 7 legislation should help the EU achieve its Green Deal environmental targets. Euro 7 should impose stricter test and measurement conditions for vehicles as well as stricter standards for particulate filters.

Panagiota Dilara, European Commission Team Leader for Law, declared “We need to ensure that the legislation we develop protects clean air and the health of citizens while providing a stable and clear regulatory framework for industry, combined with a good compliance mechanism.”

The EU already plans to phase out all fossil fuel vehicles from 2035. And some countries are imposing restrictions even earlier, as the UK plans to ban the sale of ICE vehicles in 2030 and stop all tailpipe emissions by 2035. While many countries introduce a ban on the sale of ICE vehicles, many will remain on the roads for several years. But European automakers have taken the hint and are in the process of launching their production of electric vehicles.

Nissan announced this month that it intends to discontinue ICE vehicles in the European market as soon as the Euro 7 law comes into force. New regulations could mean that automakers must invest heavily in integrating new technologies in traditional vehicles, thus making the price less competitive compared to electric vehicles.

Nissan CEO Ashwani Gupta Explain “If the total cost of ownership of battery electric cars at Euro 7 is lower than the total cost of ownership of ICE cars… [then] certainly, customers will opt for battery-powered cars. That’s why we decided not to develop ICE engines, starting [from] Euro 7, for Europe.

The Japanese automaker announced last year that it plans to invest $17.3 billion over the next five years to accelerate the electrification of its vehicles, with 23 new electrified models expected by 2030. However , Nissan will continue to sell ICE vehicles in other markets while they can remain competitive.

In addition to Nissan, several other automakers have outlined plans to switch from ICE vehicles to electric vehicles. Audi, for example, hopes to launch only fully electric vehicles from 2026, halting all manufacturing of ICE vehicles in 2033. Similarly, BMW is targeting sales of 10 million electric cars this decade, expecting the electric vehicles will account for about half of its sales by 2030. Meanwhile, Volkswagen hopes electric vehicles will compensate 60% of its European sales by 2030.

Some automakers are taking a similar approach to Nissan by appealing differently to demand from different global markets. Ford, for example, will continue selling its ICE vehicles in the United States while switching to electric vehicles in Europe by 2026.

Korean brands Hyundai and Kia have also seen recent success in Europe with their new electric vehicle models. European automakers were the most competitive when it comes to ICE models, but Korean automakers have proven themselves when it comes to EV competition. So far this year, Kia has been the UK’s best-selling car brand

Hyundai and Kia are priced competitively, and the conversion of conventional petrol models to electric models has been particularly attractive to the European market. The introduction of new innovative models this year should propel both companies to the top of the market. Hyundai’s Ioniq 5 will offer more space, greater range and quicker acceleration, while Kia’s EV6 will have a 300 mile range and can go from 0 to 60 in 4.6 seconds.

While Euro 7 may scare off some automakers as they rush to expand their electric vehicle businesses, others are embracing the change. Several European, American and Asian automakers have taken up the challenge and are expected to develop several highly competitive electric vehicle models by 2030.

By Felicity Bradstock for

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