A German court case has just ruled that cities are allowed to ban diesel cars that do not meet the Euro emissions standard should they wish to. This is a landmark ruling and in the wake of this we take a closer look at what is happening with diesel at the moment; from the companies who are abandoning it all together to the knock on effects this is having on car sales themselves.
A report by the FT has recently stated that from 2022 Fiat Chrysler will leave diesel behind for its passenger vehicles. In the run up to the result of the German court trial, Porsche also announced it was killing the production of all current diesel models (for the moment.)
In the aftermath of the Dieselgate scandal in 2015, diesel has taken a hard hit in both consumer opinion and political opposition. Most recently at the end of January, Audi have been caught doctoring its vehicles’ emissions by implementing cheat devices to pass testing, causing the recall of 127,000 vehicles worldwide.
Many car manufacturers have signalled that new models will no longer even feature pure fossil fuelled engines. For example, Volvo has said that from 2019 models will only be electric or hybrid. Not only car manufacturers have placed a timeline on the phasing out of diesel, but cities such as Rome have also confirmed the same. Virginia Raggi, Mayor of Rome, announced several days ago that Rome will ban diesel from 2024.
Sales of diesel cars have taken a large hit in the European market. In Europe, diesel’s market share fell by 8% in 2017 to 43.7% the lowest in 8 years. In the UK in January this year diesel’s market share fell by 25.6% to 35.9% in comparison with the same period in 2017. Car registration numbers have fallen, but diesel is taking the biggest hit as petrol sales see a slight increase. Threats of low second hand resell value, city driving bans and higher taxation have been some of the causes attributed to a decline in demand for diesel.
With increasingly tough restrictive legislation being brought down on diesel, it is not unthinkable that soon petrol will follow suit. It seems that the age of EV coming into its own and in good time too as we feel the force of weird weather in the beast from east in the UK at the moment.
Author: Georgie Gunn