Industry giants believe it will raise costs and hamper the electric car movement.
The European Union (EU) recently voted to outlaw the sale of combustion-engined cars from 2035. Until then, however, the world's automakers will be forced to cut emissions under the new Euro 7 rules - and they're not too pleased about that.
Industry leaders, such as BMW CEO and European Automobile Manufacturers Association (ACEA) president Oliver Zipse, said the EU's proposal poses several problems, reports Autocar.
"Unfortunately, the environmental benefit of the commission's proposal is very limited, whereas it heavily increases the cost of vehicles," added Zipse. The EU, however, argues that the reform is "affordable." The commission's proposal document says the extra cost to a car or light van will be €304 ($314).
Enforced from July 1, 2025, the new regulations aim to reduce NOx emissions by 35% and lessen tailpipe particulates by 13%, compared to Euro 6 directives. These targets apply to new cars and light vans; regulations for larger trucks and buses will come into effect in 2027.
BMW's Zipse isn't the only industry giant displeased with the decision. Ford Europe's Martin Sander believes the new regulations will hinder the industry's move to electromobility. "We should not be diverting resources to yesterday's technology and invest in zero-emission instead," said the regional Model E boss in a statement.
Electric vehicles aren't off the hook, though. Euro 7 regulations seek to limit the particles emitted by brakes and tires. The former will need particle emissions cut by 27%, while the latter is yet to be decided.
"We sometimes assume EVs are totally clean, and they are on CO2, but electric vehicles are about 40% heavier than your average combustion engine vehicle, so they emit more of these particles," said European Commissioner Thierry Breton.
The testing doesn't consider every driving scenario, but there's an emphasis on durability and longevity. Interestingly, cars and light vans must adhere to an "emissions budget" for every trip under 6.2 miles. This will prove challenging for automakers, as this includes the cold start phase - ICE engines traditionally emit more emissions at this stage.
Moreover, combustion-engined vehicles will have to maintain emissions boundaries over their lifespan (eight years or 99,419 miles). After that, the limit can be expanded by 1.2 up to 10 years or 124,274 miles.
Electric cars aren't off the hook in terms of durability, either. The proposals dictate that EVs and plug-in hybrids (PHEVs) have a battery durability figure of 80% after five years or 62,137 miles, and 70% after eight years and 99,419 miles.
Zipse took exception to the broadened scope of emissions testing and argued that it will "focus on extreme driving conditions that have hardly any real-life relevance." Previously, the BMW boss has spoken out against a premature ban on ICE vehicles.
In a move that will upset the tuning community, the EU has also stipulated the introduction of on-board diagnostic systems with built-in monitoring technology that reports engine faults that may increase emissions. If successful, this could end software changes and chipping cars to boost power.
Euro 7 regulations will differ according to the vehicle. Euro 7G, for example, is reserved for PHEV vehicles that use geofencing technology to switch to EV power in emission-free areas.
Remarkably, regulations stipulate that "the manufacturer shall install a driver warning system on those vehicles to inform the user when the traction batteries are nearly empty." If the battery isn't charged within 3.1 miles of the first warning, the software will bring the vehicle to a stop.
While the auto industry believes these regulations are too strict, environmental groups think they're not strong enough. "The proposals for cars are so weak, the auto industry might have drafted them themselves," said green transport group T&E.
Of course, these regulations will heighten the price of European-made vehicles in America, as it would be costly for affected brands to homologate cars for different regions. Then again, the State of California has similar ideas and has also outlawed the sale of ICE vehicles from 2035.
As the country's biggest market for new car sales, it's bound to have an influence, as evidenced by the State of New York and its ambitions.