Japan To Require Fuel Economy Improvements of 24% by 2020

Posted by Stephen On Saturday, August 20th, 2011

Japan’s Ministry of Industry and Ministry of Economy announced proposals for new fuel economy standards for cars that will require improvements of 24.1% over 2009 levels by 2020. Once finalized early next year, this new proposal is expected to boost the existing trend towards small cars and kei cars, as well as hybrid vehicles.

The proposed new overall average target for 2020 is 20.3 KM per liter. Passenger cars will be divided into 15 sub-divisions by weight with the range of target fuel economy levels varying from 10.6 KM per liter to 24.6KM per liter.

This new 2020 target is an improvement of 19.6% over the current 2015 targeted fuel economy figures, and as such it seems that this will require an acceleration in technological innovation to meet these standards.

However,even now there are cars that comfortably exceed these levels. Not just hybrids, but also kei cars that we have featured here before. As such it is difficult to know just how much of a push is going to be needed over the next 9 years to get there, or whether the changing marketplace and technological innovation will see them easily surpassed.

On the other hand, a mere 1 million Yen fine for car makers who fail to meet these requirements is hardly going to prove much of “stick” if it comes to that.

Sources: Nikkei, Asahi Shinbun (Japanese-language)

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