Roads / Environment / Light vehicle emissions

The NTC began reporting on the carbon dioxide emissions of new cars and light commercial vehicles in 2009, to provide a transparent benchmark for how Australia’s new car emissions performance is tracking.

Light vehicle emissions

The NTC reports on the carbon dioxide emissions intensity of new cars and light commercial vehicle sales to provide a transparent benchmark for how Australia’s new car emission performance is tracking.

Key findings from our latest report:

  • In 2017 the national average carbon dioxide emissions intensity from new passenger
    and light commercial vehicles was 181.7 g/km. This is a 0.3 per cent reduction from
    2016. This is the lowest annual reduction since records started in 2002.
  • Consumer preferences are an important factor affecting the national average of carbon
    dioxide emissions intensity for new vehicles. If all Australians who purchased new
    vehicles in 2017 had purchased vehicles with best-in-class emissions, the national
    average carbon dioxide emissions intensity would have been reduced to 76 g/km,
    a 58 per cent reduction.
  • About 92 per cent of all new vehicle sales in 2017 were from 15 makes. Of these
    15 makes, Audi had the lowest corporate average emissions intensity (145 g/km), and
    Holden had the highest (219 g/km).
  • Private buyers purchased vehicles with the lowest average emissions intensity
    (176 g/km), followed by business buyers (186 g/km) and government buyers (199 g/km).
  • There were 97 ‘green’ car models available in Australia in 2017 (compared with 51 in
    2016), which represented 3.8 per cent of total sales (compared with 2.5 per cent in
    2016). A ‘green’ car is defined as a vehicle with emissions intensity that does not
    exceed 120 g/km.
  • There were 2,424 electric vehicles sold in 2017 (compared to 1,369 in 2016) which is a
    77 per cent increase from 2016.
  • The average emission intensity for new passenger vehicles in European countries
    was 118.5 g/km in 2017. In the same year, Australia’s average emissions intensity for
    passenger vehicles was 171.5 g/km, 45 per cent higher.
  • There are many reasons why Australian light vehicle emissions intensity are higher
    than in Europe. Some of the reasons include:
    • Australian consumer preferences for heavier vehicles with larger and more
      powerful engines
    • Australia has a lower proportion of diesel-powered engines
    • Australia has fewer government incentives for lower emissions vehicles
    • relatively lower fuel prices in Australia compared with Europe.

This information is based on data provided by the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries and published annually.

 

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Last Updated: 29/6/2018