04-Apr-2017 @ 13:00
Today the European Parliament backed new measures that will ensure vehicles continue to meet emissions and safety standards once out of the showroom.
The revised market surveillance rules aim to prevent another vehicle emissions scandal and restore consumer confidence in the car market. They place obligations on Member States to properly test the cars on their country’s roads and put in place oversight at all stages of the process.
Conservative MEP Daniel Dalton, who led the plan through the Parliament said: “Today’s vote will begin to restore confidence in our testing systems and in our car manufacturers.
“This new system replaces one which was at best patchy and at worst ineffective, allowing the car emissions scandal to be undetected for so long. Any manufacturer who wants to try and cheat the system are now very likely to be caught with the combination of these new measures, combined with the real driving emissions tests for new cars passed by the European Parliament last year.”
Under the new measures, Member States will be required to test 20 per cent of the car models on sale in the country each year. These will be of various ages to ensure that the vehicle still meets minimum standards while in use.
The report also introduces greater oversight, with Member States having to submit their surveillance plans to the European Commission for approval and an independent review system being created. The Commission will be able to undertake its own testing when necessary, issue recalls and levy fines on manufacturers in the event of failures.
West Midlands MEP Mr Dalton added: “These new rules make sure that the cars on our roads are as safe and as clean as manufacturers claim them to be. They leave us in a strong position to enter trilogue talks with the European Commission and Council."
Conservative MEP Vicky Ford, who chairs the Internal Market Committee, welcomed the Parliament’s approval.
She said: “These reforms will restore consumer trust when buying a car; the single largest purchase most people ever make. They mean we can now detect if a car isn't meeting standards once on the road and allow us to hold manufacturers to account."
"Achieving this deal was no small feat and it is significant that it was led by a British negotiator. I hope that the new relationship between the UK and the EU post Brexit will enable continued practical co-operation on issues of this nature."