The automotive states of Bavaria, Baden-Württemberg and Lower Saxony fear that the implementation of the Euro 7 emissions standard will have serious disadvantages for the German automotive industry it in a letter from the three prime ministers of the federal states to Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD), which is available to the German Press Agency in Munich. Social benefits and economic costs must be “in an appropriate relationship”.

“A new emission standard and the associated test conditions must also be technically and economically achievable. Appropriate implementation deadlines are also required, which also take into account the development cycles of the automobile manufacturers,” continues the three-page letter from Markus Söder (CSU), Winfried Kretschmann (Greens ) and Stephan Weil (SPD).

In November, the EU Commission presented its proposals for stricter emissions standards in the EU. According to the Commission, road transport is the largest source of air pollution in cities. It is estimated that particulate matter and nitrogen oxide pollution from road traffic caused around 70,000 premature deaths in 2018 in the EU countries and Great Britain. Euro 7 is expected to reduce nitrogen oxide emissions from cars by an estimated 35 percent by 2035, and by more than 50 percent from buses and trucks.

The European Parliament and EU states still have to approve the proposals. Negotiations are still ongoing here. In a next step, EU countries and Parliament must come to an agreement before the new rules can come into force. In theory, therefore, some changes can still be made to the Commission’s proposal.

Criticism of deadlines and technical requirements

The car manufacturers and their suppliers have already “taken the irreversible path towards zero-emission drives,” it continues. Baden-Württemberg, Bavaria and Lower Saxony are therefore of the opinion that the new emissions standard should not result in “excessive resources having to be spent on optimizing a technology that is unlikely to be approved within the EU from 2035”. With a view to the competitiveness of companies and climate protection, the financial resources of the industry must flow much more urgently into the new, climate-friendly drives.

In particular, the prime ministers criticized the implementation deadlines of the new standard in their letter – July 2025 for passenger cars and light commercial vehicles and July 2027 for heavy commercial vehicles. These are “too ambitious technologically”. In addition, there is the “real danger” that a legally secure registration of the vehicles is not possible and that there is a traffic jam at the registration authorities.

From the point of view of the auto countries, the federal government must prevent the negative consequences for jobs, value creation and competitiveness in the negotiations at EU level. There is a lot at stake for the three car states of Baden-Württemberg, Bavaria and Lower Saxony, “in which well over a million people make their living from the automobile”.