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Emissions tests cast further doubt over Government fuel savings projections

27.3.2017

Results from Australia’s first on-road vehicle emissions test program reveal vehicles are using up to 60 per cent more fuel on the road than in Government-mandated laboratory tests, raising serious concerns about the information provided to consumers and casting doubts over Government claims that motorists will save on fuel costs as a result of proposals to introduce tougher vehicle emissions standards.

Commissioned by the Australian Automobile Association (AAA) in the wake of the Volkswagen scandal, 17 of a total of 30 vehicles have been tested on Australian roads.

The results reveal real-world fuel consumption and greenhouse gas emissions are up to 60 per cent higher than claimed on the Government’s mandated Fuel Consumption Label and 25 per cent higher on average.

The latest results also show on-road noxious gas emissions up to eight times the legal limit.

AAA Chief Executive Michael Bradley said: “These results are bad news for Australian consumers looking for good information on which to base their car buying decisions. They also place a huge question mark over the fuel and cost savings the Government is offering Australians under its proposals to introduce tougher vehicle emissions restrictions. Our test results are a warning to Australians to take the Government’s promises of fuel and cost savings with a grain of salt, and expect those savings to be significantly less than what’s promised.

“Our on-road testing is further evidence that the assumptions upon which the Government is basing its vehicle emissions reductions proposals are flawed, and may end up costing Australians more than necessary and deliver less to the environment than promised.

“The AAA does not shy away from the fact that Australian motorists must make a fair contribution to improving Australia’s environmental performance. But emissions policy must deliver for the environment at the least cost to motorists and the economy. The AAA and Australia’s motoring clubs again call on the Government to update its modelling, undertake further public consultation and introduce real-world driving testing for new vehicles in Australia,” Mr Bradley said.

The table below shows the real-world fuel consumption and CO2 emissions against the official laboratory results of each vehicle.  Red shading indicates the on-road emission or fuel consumption exceeds the laboratory limit.  All but one vehicle tested exceeded its claimed fuel use.

For more information on the AAA’s on-road testing program visit http://www.aaa.asn.au/reports/

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