Manufacturers and operators in joint call to EU on Weights and Dimensions proposals

Brussels, 19 November 2014 – ACEA and IRU today jointly called on EU decision-makers to focus on commercial vehicle fuel-efficiency when reviewing the 96/53/EC weights and dimensions proposal. The road freight transport and commercial vehicle manufacturing industries reiterated the need to permit the wider use of fuel-saving technologies, rather than relying solely on additional aerodynamic performance improvements.

In the framework of continuing discussions between the European Parliament and the Council to find an agreement on the European Commission proposal to modify Directive 96/53/EC on weights and dimensions, the European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association (ACEA) and the International Road Transport Union (IRU) called on decision-makers to use improved overall fuel-efficiency – rather than solely aerodynamic performance – as a precondition for allowing increased vehicle length.

This framework has been developed following the obligation in the European Commission proposal that any increase in vehicle length, including of the vehicle cab, would have to include aerodynamic, safety and comfort improvements. The current form of these various obligations could be very difficult to reconcile.

IRU General Delegate to the EU, Michael Nielsen, said, “The final agreement on weights and dimensions must allow road freight transport operators to further reduce fuel consumption, improve efficiency, comfort and safety with as few restrictions as possible. I urge European decision-makers to reach an agreement that ensures the benefits we all wish to see are realised.”

ACEA Secretary General Erik Jonnaert said, “There are many more effective ways of reducing fuel consumption and CO2 emissions than entirely redesigning the cabin. The industry is committed to continuing to improve truck safety. However, for this, safety technologies that prevent accidents happening in the first place are the best way forward. A whole vehicle approach represents the best possible solution.”

Road transport will continue to play a key role in a resource-efficient and sustainable transport system. Therefore, enabling innovation and progress in road transport is essential to achieving the objectives of the 2011 EU Transport Policy White Paper.

Notes for editors

About the International Road Transport Unit (IRU)

The International Road Transport Union (IRU) is the world road transport organisation, which upholds the interests of bus, coach, taxi and truck operators to ensure economic growth and prosperity via the sustainable mobility of people and goods by road worldwide. It is present in over 70 countries.

For further information please contact Juliette Ebélé,, +41 22 918 27 07

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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