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Information on the fuel consumption and CO₂ emissions of new cars

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Information on the fuel consumption and CO₂ emissions of new cars

 

SUMMARY OF:

Directive 1999/94/EC — availability of consumer information on fuel economy and CO2 emissions in respect of the marketing of new passenger cars

WHAT IS THE AIM OF THE DIRECTIVE?

To help consumers choose vehicles with low fuel consumption, the directive requires dealers in new passenger cars to provide potential buyers with useful information on these vehicles’ fuel consumption and their CO2 emissions. This information must be displayed on the car’s label, on posters and other promotional material, and in specific guides.

KEY POINTS

The purpose of the directive is to ensure that information relating to the fuel economy and CO2 emissions of new passenger cars offered for sale or lease in the EU is made available to consumers. This consumer information is communicated via 4 different methods:

  • attaching a fuel consumption and CO2 emissions label to the vehicle;
  • producing a fuel consumption and CO2 emissions guide;
  • displaying posters in car showrooms;
  • including fuel consumption and CO2 emissions data in promotional material.

Fuel economy label

A fuel economy label must be attached to the windscreen of all new passenger cars at the point of sale. This label must be clearly visible and must meet certain requirements set out in Annex I. In particular, it must contain an estimate of fuel consumption, expressed in litres per 100 kilometres or in kilometres per litre (or in miles per gallon), and of CO2 emissions.

Fuel economy guide

A fuel economy guide must be produced at national level at least once a year. It must set out all the information specified in Annex II, including a list of the 10 most fuel-efficient new car versions in terms of their CO2 emissions by fuel type. This guide must be compact, portable and free of charge. Consumers must be able to obtain it both at the point of sale of the dealer and from a designated body within each EU country.

Fuel consumption data

For each make on sale, the dealer must display on posters or in any other form (including electronic displays) a list of the fuel consumption data of all the models. These data should be broken down by type of fuel and ranked in order of fuel efficiency as indicated by CO2 emission levels.

Promotional material (advertisements in newspapers, posters and brochures) used in marketing new cars must contain fuel consumption and CO2 emissions data.

Any marking relating to fuel consumption which does not comply with the above rules and which might cause confusion is prohibited.

Follow-up and monitoring

EU countries must notify the European Commission of the competent body or bodies responsible for the implementation and functioning of the consumer information scheme.

Commission recommendation and new regulatory test procedure

In May 2017, the Commission adopted a recommendation on the use of fuel consumption and CO2 emissions values type-approved and measured in accordance with the new world harmonised light vehicles test procedure (WLTP). This must be done when making information available to consumers in order to ensure that they have access to more representative WLTP-based values as soon as possible, to avoid market distortion and to support smooth and harmonised implementation in the EU. The Commission makes a number of recommendations to EU countries, including that they ensure the following:

  • The new European driving cycle (NEDC) values recorded in the certificates of conformity of new registered cars are used to communicate the official fuel consumption and specific emissions of CO2 to consumers until 31 December 2018. After this date all new vehicles placed on the EU market will be tested and type-approved in accordance with the WLTP, providing for stricter test conditions and more realistic fuel consumption and CO2 emissions values.
  • Only WLTP fuel consumption and CO2 emissions values should be used for consumer information purposes from 1 January 2019.
  • Promotional material that is distributed by electronic means and allows consumers to configure a specific vehicle, such as online car configurators, must clearly demonstrate how different specific equipment and optional extras affect the fuel consumption and CO2 emission values that are type-approved and measured in accordance with the WLTP.
  • Before taking a decision on the purchase of a car, consumers must be informed about the changes in fuel consumption and CO2 emissions values resulting from the introduction of the WLTP as well as about the implications that those changes may have at the time of registration (e.g. on car taxation).
  • The official fuel consumption and specific CO2 emissions values must include at least the ‘combined’ values* measured in accordance with the relevant test procedure.
  • Appropriate information campaigns are launched to explain to consumers the introduction of the WLTP and its implications for fuel consumption and CO2 emission values, in particular the increase in those values compared to those that are derived under the NEDC, and the meaning of values resulting from different test phases.

FROM WHEN DOES THE DIRECTIVE APPLY?

It has applied since 18 January 2000 and had to become law in the EU countries by 18 January 2001.

BACKGROUND

For more information, see:

KEY TERMS

Key terms

Combined values: a value derived from a combination of the official fuel consumption value and the official specific CO2 emission value.

MAIN DOCUMENT

Directive 1999/94/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 13 December 1999 relating to the availability of consumer information on fuel economy and CO2 emissions in respect of the marketing of new passenger cars (OJ L 12, 18.1.2000, pp. 16-23)

Successive amendments to Directive 1999/94/EC have been incorporated into the original document. This consolidated version is of documentary value only.

RELATED DOCUMENTS

Commission Regulation (EU) 2017/1151 of 1 June 2017 supplementing Regulation (EC) No 715/2007 of the European Parliament and of the Council on type-approval of motor vehicles with respect to emissions from light passenger and commercial vehicles (Euro 5 and Euro 6) and on access to vehicle repair and maintenance information, amending Directive 2007/46/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council, Commission Regulation (EC) No 692/2008 and Commission Regulation (EU) No 1230/2012 and repealing Commission Regulation (EC) No 692/2008 (OJ L 175, 7.7.2017, pp. 1-643)

Commission Recommendation (EU) 2017/948 of 31 May 2017 on the use of fuel consumption and CO2 emissions values type-approved and measured in accordance with the World Harmonised Light Vehicles Test Procedure when making information available for consumers pursuant to Directive 1999/94/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council (OJ L 142, 2.6.2017, pp. 100-103)

Commission Recommendation 2003/217/EC of 26 March 2003 on the application to other media of the provisions of Directive 1999/94/EC concerning promotional literature (OJ L 82, 29.3.2003, pp. 33-34)

last update 13.12.2017

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