The Government has launched a new consultation document outlining its plans to clamp down on carmakers that fit emissions ‘cheat’ devices.
If the proposals go ahead car manufacturers could face unlimited fines in the UK if they are found to have fitted emissions defeat devices to their models.
The report also outlines an intention to create a new civil and/or criminal offence of supplying a vehicle fitted with an emissions defeat device that has the aim of deliberately circumventing type approval regulations. Manufacturers, importers and dealers could all be affected.
The consultation document, entitled ‘Road vehicles: Improving air quality and safety’, states: “Given the recent VW Dieselgate scandal and the strong imperative to improve air quality as set out in the UK Plan for Tackling Roadside Nitrogen Dioxide Concentrations, we are investigating what more can be done.”
In the report the Government refers to the ‘Volkswagen scandal’ as a specific example of the behaviour it is trying to prevent.
The consultation also outlines a proposal to require manufacturers to change all of their published information on fuel consumption for all cars from current NEDC to the new WLTP figures by January 1, 2019.
“We believe that this approach of figures for all manufacturers and vehicles changing on the same day will minimise (although not eliminate) confusion for consumers and will also be easier for vehicle manufacturers and dealers to handle. But we are seeking views from all interested parties to help determine the best policy,” the consultation document stated.
Manufacturers will be required to publish WLTP CO2 emissions figures for all models by April 6, 2020, at which point Benefit-in-Kind (BIK) tax and Vehicle Excise Duty (VED) will be based on that figure.
The consultation document is available to view here