CLEPA | Euro 7 proposal: A significant step towards higher ambition, but technical challenges a concern

  • CLEPA supports a sensible further development of pollutant emission standards. Automotive suppliers are committed to sustainable mobility, to improved air quality and public health.
  • The Euro 7 proposal introduces more stringent limits, covering also new pollutants, as well as extended testing conditions.

in CLEPA, 10-11-2022


The European Commission published today its proposal for new vehicle pollutant emission standards. The Euro 7 proposal, which covers light- and heavy-duty vehicles, aims to improve EU air quality and public health by continuing to lower pollutant emissions coming from road transport.

Overall, the proposal makes a significant step towards higher ambition. However, there are key elements of timing and both technical and economic feasibility that need to be addressed to ensure the new rules can be implemented and also apply to realistic driving situations.

Benjamin Krieger, CLEPA Secretary General, says: “A balanced Euro 7 will encourage innovation and improve air quality, benefiting the environment, consumers, and industry. But it needs to remain realistic as to what is technically achievable with current and near-future technologies.”

He goes on to say, “If the advanced internal combustion engine has a role to play in future mobility, its environmental impact has to be further improved. This, alongside controlling emissions from other sources, such as brakes and tyres, which aren’t related to the drive train.”

CLEPA stresses the importance of the lead time needed by industry to develop and validate the new Euro 7 technologies, and also in consideration of the time required for the co-decision legislative process. The specific technical parameters for vehicle testing are key factors influencing the overall severity of the new regulation; these parameters are not yet known and will come via several implementing and delegated acts, which should be completed as soon as possible to enable a swift implementation of Euro 7. A lead-time of at least 24 months after the finalisation of the secondary legislation is necessary for light-duty vehicles. For heavy-duty vehicles, 36 months are needed.

Further, in light of the upcoming CO2 standards for heavy-duty vehicles slated for beginning of 2023, CLEPA calls for a coherent legislative framework in this regard.

A smooth progress of the complete decision-making process, resulting lead-time and final content, including implementing and delegated acts, remain critical to a successful implementation.

Automotive suppliers stand ready to contribute and actively engage with policymakers to achieve a successful implementation of Euro 7 and other climate policies, balancing environmental, social and economic goals.

 

 

CLEPA Statement: Data Act is important but has to be complemented soon by sector-specific legislation on access to in-vehicle data

A delay of a sector-specific legislation risks further reducing competitiveness and limits consumer choice

in CLEPA, 08-11-2022


The horizontal Data Act is a relevant regulation to ensure a more level playing field between the different actors in the data economy and, therefore, CLEPA strongly supports its overall goal and approach. However, this proposal is not concrete enough to tackle the particular obstacles concerning the deployment of data-based services in the automotive sector. For that reason, the Data Act needs to be complemented by a sector-specific legislation as soon as possible.

Automotive technology is rapidly advancing, with vehicles generating and collecting ever greater quantities of data to operate and monitor systems. This data offers a huge potential to improve and develop new services for the benefit of consumers. However, automotive suppliers and other third-party service providers currently rely on the willingness and conditions of vehicle manufacturers to provide access to this data. Such a level of control on the market carries the risk of creating “gatekeepers”, with a detrimental effect on fair competition, innovation and consumer choice.

CLEPA sees the horizontal Data Act as an important first step in improving the situation by ensuring that third parties can provide innovative services to the end user. Moreover, the association welcomes that the proposal puts the consumer in the centre and imposes obligations on data holders.

Yet, we think that the Data Act does not fully reflect the complexities of the deployment of data-based services in the automotive sector. Therefore, we strongly advocate for a swift publication of the proposal for the complementary sector-specific regulation which is currently being drafted by the European Commission.

“A prompt publication of the sector-specific proposal on access to in-vehicle data, functions and resources by the Commission will contribute to improving competition, boosting innovation capabilities of thousands of automotive supply companies, and protecting consumer rights and choice”, says CLEPA’s Secretary General Benjamin Krieger. “The technical work and discussions behind this legislation have been at full speed for the past years. Going ahead with the proposal now would make a huge difference and allow for its adoption still during the current legislative term.”

Key considerations for a successful sector-specific regulation

  • Complementing the Data Act, the new sector-specific regulation should at least provide:
  • Transparency on available data by vehicle identification number incl. metadata and formats;
  • The definition of a common set of data supported by all vehicles;
  • Sector-specific definitions of product, data holder, and data, especially with regards to the data protected by IP rights;
  • Granting access to vehicle resources like display, audio, Google Android/Apple CarPlay environments and embedded software routines;
  • The provision of a common automotive API (Application Programming Interface);

A governance body or forum to assign roles, rights, authorisations, and liabilities, as well as processes for the provision of user consent and API releases and the regular revision of a common data set.

 

 

 

CLEPA | The success of the Green Deal is directly linked to European competitiveness

The mild October temperatures provided some relief in Europe to cope with the energy crisis, but the predictions for the coming winter and next year leave little room for optimism: continued supply chain distortions, rising energy and raw materials cost, overall inflation, as well as the weakening demand for vehicles form a perfect storm.

in CLEPA, by Benjamin Krieger, 02-11-2022


The CLEPA Pulse Check, a biannual survey of automotive suppliers conducted together with McKinsey, shows that despite optimisation of production costs and other short-term measures, 23% of suppliers expect to record losses this year. For 2023, the outlook is gloomier still with 27% expecting a loss. The Pulse Check clearly documents the pressure that automotive suppliers are facing, which is likely to be exacerbated this winter. With nearly 70% of the suppliers operating far below EBIT margins of 5%, the financing of the green and digital transition is becoming increasingly challenging.

Suppliers hold strong to their commitment to R&I spending, but without access to affordable energy in the EU and fair sharing of the cost burden from inflation along the supply chain, competitiveness and the speed of innovation in the sector will diminish.

This is an unprecedented situation that requires urgent political action, as the global competitiveness of the European automotive ecosystem is at stake.

Unprecedented regulatory pressure

At the same time, the EU has now confirmed to phase-out the internal combustion engine (ICE) by 2035. The 100% CO2 reduction target at the tailpipe, is in fact, an implicit ban on the ICE technology and the most ambitious target worldwide. Automotive suppliers support the objective of climate-neutral mobility and have the technologies to make this a reality. However, the most ambitious electrification target will not succeed, if it is not accompanied by policies to ensure charging and refuelling infrastructure, green energy, access to raw materials and a just transition. Environmental targets must take into account the social and economic dimensions.

The negotiations on the rules for renewable energy, charging infrastructure, energy taxation and other pieces of the puzzle have yet to be concluded or will only start later, such as the planned policy for critical raw materials. These key files need to result in a coherent framework that can be implemented successfully.

The CO2 regulation foresees a review in the year 2026, which will cover not only the deployment of zero-emission vehicles but also of charging infrastructure, availability of green energy and fuels, affordability of vehicles and the impact on the industry. This review must be an opportunity to correct course where needed.

CLEPA strongly supports technology diversity to ensure that the most efficient and effective approach to cutting emissions prevails and to ensure a manageable transition that leaves no one behind. Technology diversity includes full electrification, hybrid drivetrains and vehicles running on hydrogen, either in gas engines or fuel cells. All of these technologies are climate neutral if running on renewable energy, in the form of green electricity or renewable hydrogen and fuels.

The CO2 regulation for cars and vans, in principle, contains a role for sustainable renewable fuels also in new vehicles. For this clause to have a real world impact, it is up to the Commission to make a proposal for its implementation into law.

Even more than for cars, a technology-open approach is necessary to decarbonise heavy-duty vehicles, which travel long distances typically across borders, are made up of fleets, and have specific use-cases. Hydrogen or carbon-neutral fuels, for example, can effectively reduce emissions to net-zero, alongside electrification, especially for the existing parc of nearly 7 million vehicles. The debate on technology diversity must continue once the proposal for the revision of CO2 targets for trucks starts, and the new Euro7 pollutant emission standards are adopted later this year.

#JustTransition – no easy feat

Meanwhile, the transition is at full pace and requires political support, as CLEPA points out, together with a coalition of unions, trade associations and environment NGOs. A series of publications have quantified potential job losses, gains and expected changes in the automotive sector. BCG concluded that the transformation in the passenger car segment alone would require the upskilling and retraining of 2.4 million workers. The European Battery Alliance argues that 800,000 skilled workers are needed for EU e-mobility ambitions. And CLEPA’s recent study indicates that 501,000 jobs in the ICE-supply chain, or 84% of the current ICE powertrain employment, will become obsolete.

Whilst new jobs will be created in the electromobility ecosystem, jobs will not be easily interchangeable as they are often located in different places, along different timelines and require different skill sets. Policy support is vital in addressing this challenge, with targeted funding for training, reskilling and upskilling of workers in the automotive sector.

Given the number of jobs at stake and the magnitude of the ongoing transformation, social disruption due to a badly managed transition might severely undermine the ability of the European Green Deal to succeed in a sector which has so far defended its position as a global export champion.

 

Benjamin Krieger

CLEPA Secretary General