European officials are set to force a reduction in CO2 emissions from new light commercial vehicles.
According to the British SMMT, which represents the interests of vehicle manufacturers and traders here, the European Commission wants to cut average fuel use and CO2 emissions from vans from the 2002 average of 33mpg and 20g/km to 37.4mpg and 175g/km by 2012.
It then proposes to go further and force manufacturers to produce light commercial vans that typically return 40.9mpg and emit just 160g/km of CO2 by 2015.
“The European Commission aims to set legally binding fuel and CO2 standards for vans before the end of the year and firms making vans and cars could have a single emission target,” said an SMMT spokesman.
“No one in the European Commission is saying anything definite about similar standards for trucks and buses yet, but industry observers suggest they are a 'when not if' deal.”
It was only at the beginning of this year, that van manufacturers were forced to provide data on their vehicles’ emission levels to government.
However, while some also voluntarily provide this data to van users, many manufacturers still refuse to make their new vans’ emission levels public.
Now the pressure is increasing not only to make this information available to buyers, but also to reduce new van emission levels in parallel with those of new cars