Automobile industry addresses challenges of decarbonisation

Berlin, 1 June 2016 – Ahead of the publication of the European Commission’s Communication on the Decarbonisation of Transport next month, the European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association (ACEA) has outlined some key challenges that industry and policy makers must overcome to reduce CO2 emissions more effectively. ACEA’s Board met today in Berlin on the occasion of the association’s 25th anniversary General Assembly.

New vehicles make up just 5% of the entire motor vehicle fleet. “This shows that emissions goals that exclusively target new vehicles simply fail to address the bulk of the problem,” stated Zetsche. “We need a comprehensive approach that reduces CO2 emissions more effectively by drawing on the full spectrum of solutions, including vehicle technology, cleaner fuels, altering driver behaviour, improving infrastructure, and introducing intelligent transport systems.”

To gain a better insight into the potential of such an approach, ACEA brought together the expertise of more than 50 relevant transport-related stakeholders throughout 2015. The findings have now been summarised in a report entitled ‘Joining forces to tackle the road transport CO2 challenge’, which was launched in Berlin today.

Regarding the measurement of emissions, the automobile industry recognises that the current test cycle (NEDC), designed in the 1980s, is now obsolete. It therefore is actively contributing to an updated laboratory test – WLTP – as well as an additional new test to measure pollutant emissions on the road. This new procedure is known as Real Driving Emissions (RDE). “We need to move forward now with these tests in order to bridge the gap between lab and reality,” Zetsche stated.

Zetsche: “RDE and WLTP require a tremendous effort on the part of Europe’s car manufacturers, both in terms of investments and production. Still, manufacturers are fully supportive of these efforts and encourage the introduction of these new regulations because they will provide clarity for customers and the industry.” An important step would be to synchronise the implementation timeframes for WLTP and RDE, ACEA argues.

ACEA also launched the 2016-2017 edition of its Pocket Guide today containing the latest industry data on employment, registrations, trade, production and taxation.

Notes for editors

About ACEA

  • The European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association (ACEA) represents the 15 major Europe-based car, van, truck and bus makers: BMW Group, CNH Industrial, DAF Trucks, Daimler, Ferrari, Ford of Europe, Honda Motor Europe, Hyundai Motor Europe, Jaguar Land Rover, Renault Group, Stellantis, Toyota Motor Europe, Volkswagen Group, Volvo Cars, and Volvo Group.
  • Visit for more information about ACEA, and follow us on or
  • Contact: Cara McLaughlin, Communications Director,, +32 485 88 66 47.

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About the EU automobile industry

  • 14.6 million Europeans work in the auto industry (directly and indirectly), accounting for 6.7% of all EU jobs.
  • 11.5% of EU manufacturing jobs – some 3.7 million – are in the automotive sector.
  • Motor vehicles are responsible for €398.4 billion of tax revenue for governments across key European markets.
  • The automobile industry generates a trade surplus of €74 billion for the EU.
  • The turnover generated by the auto industry represents more than 8% of the EU’s GDP.
  • Investing €62 billion in R&D annually, the automotive sector is Europe’s largest private contributor to innovation, accounting for 33% of total EU spending.
Content type Press release
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