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Car association demands better emissions tests


Alex Ritchie

Alex Ritchie

( 2 min read )

The Australian Automobile Association (AAA) will today begin a campaign to urge the Federal Government to introduce real-world emissions testings for new cars that consider Australian conditions. 

The campaign comes after real world testing of new cars in Australia found consumers are paying more for vehicles they believe are saving fuel and the environment, however these vehicles are using up to 59 per cent more fuel and emitting up to seven times the legal limit of “some noxious emissions than indicated by laboratory-only tests.” 

Consumers are increasingly paying for these technologies which claim to reduce consumption and emissions in a laboratory environment, but fail to do so in the real world. This includes testing a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle that used four times the reported fuel consumption. 

The AAA believes the issue stems from emission regulations only being policed via “a standard laboratory test”, in which some vehicles are “optimised for laboratory performance”. 

The AAA is campaigning for the Federal Government to introduce test programs that will be modelled on the European standard but modified slightly to take account of Australian conditions. This will help to allow for variations such as “higher urban average speeds, lower highway maximum speed, and a warmer climate”. 

Michael Bradley, AAA Chief Executive, stated in a press release today that “more stringent emissions laws are meant to reduce pollution and drive down fuel use, however our results suggest such benefits largely occur only in the laboratory. 

“Popular cars on the Australian market are using up to 59 per cent more fuel than advertised and emitting more than seven times the legal limit of some noxious emissions.  

“It’s becoming clear that as emissions standards tighten, the gap between laboratory results and real-world results is widening, meaning consumers and the environment are increasingly being ripped off.” 

“Australian motorists have a right to accurate information about fuel consumption and environmental performance when buying a new car. 

“The current system is misleading consumers and regulators. Only real world testing can drive down costs to consumers and deliver meaningful environmental benefit.”

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