Fleet News

Noise level law causes headache for UK car makers

BRITAIN'S major car makers are being forced to modify their ranges - or ditch some models altogether - following an EU directive ordering a reduction in drive-by noise levels.

The Ford Escort RS 2000 and Scorpio 2.0 16v and 2.9 12v are among the casualties and other engines will be modified to cope with the new legislation. There are rumours in some quarters that fleets in the know will benefit from a buying bonanza as car makers struggle to sell 'old' models before the October 1 cut-off date, but a Ford spokesman said: 'We have known about this for some time and have been modifying production accordingly. It will be a seamless change.'

The directive orders drive-by noise levels to be cut from 77 to 74 decibels, with direct injection turbodiesels being cut from 78 to 75 decibels. The rule was applied to new car homologations from October 1 last year and applies to all new vehicles being sold from October 1 this year.

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