CO2 EMISSIONS COSTS THREATEN SMALL CARS

REPORT: Peugeot, Citroen to cut 108, C1 as CO2 madness cuts into the car world

Affordable new cars may well soon to be confined to history. That’s according to a Reuters report on the effects of CO2 emissions on A segment cars,

The report fingers the EU’s CO2 limits for mounting pressure on the vibrant small car market. That’s a direct result of fuel-saving technologies and electric models making small cars too expensive to compete in the price sensitive A-segment.

CARMAKERS CANNOT MEET A SEGMENT CO2 DEMANDS

Now according to the Reuters story, PSA’s ever-popular Peugeot 108 and Citroën C1 superminis will not be replaced. The company is reportedly pulling out of the A segment joint venture. PSA will cull the duo that’s been co-produced with the Toyota Aygo since 2014. A company spokesman admitted that it will concentrate on products that best meet customer expectations. And CO2 targets.

How Fiat-Chrysler and PSA integrating into the new Stellantis plays into this scenario remains a moot point. Fiat has already hybridised the new Panda and the more premium 500. Still, carmakers can only beat 95 g/km CO2 emissions with expensive technologies like diesel, hybrid or electric drive.

Toyota’s 10,000 euro Aygo manages 112 grams of CO2 per kilometre, while the Yaris Hybrid emits 87 g/km. At double the price. VW’s 103 g/km natural gas Up costs 15,500 euros, but the electric version costs around 22,000 euros. VW is unlikely to replace the Up in any event. Upgrading the platform to new crash regulations is not worth the expense. Before even considering the CO2 dilemma.

DOUBLE THE PRICE TO MEET GREEN GOALS

To make matters worse, suitable first-time alternatives such as a 15,000 euro entry Polo are likely to disappear too. Volkswagen cannot economically cut those cars’ 127 grams of CO2 per kilometre emissions levels down to the required 96 grams. Especially considering that segment’s already somewhat meagre profit contribution.

Electric drive alternatives such as VW’s ID.1 slated for 2025 will cost more well over 20000 euros at today’s value. Which means Wolfsburg is unlikely to be able to compete in the price-sensitive A segment in future. What Dacia’s new Spring (Renault Kwid) electric city car will cost remains to be seen.

A segment buyers may have to walk. Or rely on public transport. Or live in vain hope. That their electric cars’ allegedly lower operational costs will save then money in the long run.

How this affects markets like South Africa. remains to be seen. We remain quite oblivious to that electric car whiplash, will adapt to this scenario n. It is likely that such countries will in future band together to keep producing economical enough small cars. Leaving Europe to strangle its car industry and motorists with ill conceived and impossible to meet regulations.

That in itself remains a positive and welcome indicator for third world cars and motoring… — Michele Lupini

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