The world's fastest sports and luxury cars will be most affected.
The gas guzzler tax for vehicles with especially poor fuel-efficiency is nothing new. Most of the time, the cost of this tax pales in comparison to the total vehicle cost. For instance, the Ford Mustang Shelby GT500 starts at over $70,000 with a gas guzzler tax of $2,600.
However, a far higher gas guzzler tax is being proposed in France which could add up to 50,000 euros (just under $59,000 at current exchange rates) to the cost of some sports cars in that country. This amount is equivalent to the purchase price of a brand new Porsche 718 Cayman on its own! According to a Bloomberg report, the draft budget law is currently under consideration by France's parliament.
If approved, the amount would more than double the current taxes on powerful cars that are especially polluting. The new tax could come into effect from as early as 2022. As early as next year, vehicles emitting over 225 grams of carbon dioxide per kilometer will be taxed 40,000 euros. According to the European Union's 2030 Climate Target Plan, CO2 emissions must be reduced by 55 percent relative to 1990 levels. Specific models that would be affected by the maximum tax amount include the Ferrari Portofino, Porsche 718 Spyder, Lamborghini Urus, Mercedes AMG models, and the Bentley Flying Spur.
The announcement puts further pressure on the internal combustion engine as the sole means of powering high-performance cars. Already, California plans to ban gas-powered vehicles by 2035. It's why even Ferrari, purveyor of the mighty V12 power plant, aims to electrify 60 percent of its lineup by the year 2022.
Recent hybridized Ferraris have been spotted testing, joining existing hybrid Ferraris like the SF90 Stradale. Mercedes also has big plans for the new AMG S63e and S73e, both of which will receive hybrid power.
But with France's 2022 legislation around the corner, it's feasible that many top-tier manufacturers will see a drop in sales of their top models. Some customers simply wouldn't be willing to pay that much in taxes. As Europe's second-largest auto market, it wouldn't be surprising to see other European countries follow France's latest move, although, by comparison, Italy's special tax amounts to only $2,500.