Motoring News

Part Two: What are vehicle manufacturers doing now to reduce their carbon footprint?

Follow this series to stay up to date with what vehicle manufacturers are doing to reduce their carbon footprint and what deadlines they have set themselves to deliver.


In the future, MINI will enable customers all over the world to experience emission-free driving with a completely electrified model family. At the same time, MINI will still offer highly efficient petrol and diesel engines, which continue be an ideal solution for target groups and regions whose mobility needs are not yet met by all-electric vehicles.

Based on a new vehicle architecture, developed from the ground up for pure e-mobility, battery-electric vehicles will be produced in China from 2023, in cooperation with the local manufacturer Great Wall Motor.

This venture will enable MINI to meet the rising demand for emission-free driving both in China and in the other global markets. With locally manufactured vehicles, MINI will serve the growing Chinese automotive market whilst maintaining stable production facilities at other locations.


Dean Sheed, General Manager of Audi New Zealand says "there is no doubt that a new era has begun as the industry transitions from ICE – internal combustion engines – to electric mobility, and with New Zealand leading the world in terms of green electricity, we’re the perfect market for EVs."

“There’s a societal change that's happened due to global warming and we have got to be kinder on the planet for our children, and children’s children and ultimately, to do the right thing.”

Sheed is confident that a nation passionate about motor vehicles will be able to go electric, largely because electric offerings show superior design and performance is possible without compromise.

Having committed to the Paris Climate Agreement, Audi is committed to a sustainable future.

Sheed says; “That future is only looking bigger and better, both for EVs and the planet. It may take people a while to convert, but they’ll get there."

“If I can show them a car that delivers in performance and efficiency to a greater degree, they’ll start seeing there’s a new way.”

In March 2021 Audi boss Markus Duesmann declared petrol and diesel engines to be discontinued with immediate effect. "The EU plans for an even stricter Euro 7 emissions standard are a huge technical challenge and at the same time have little benefit for the environment. That extremely restricts the combustion engine," said Duesmann. "We will no longer develop a new internal combustion engine, but will adapt our existing internal combustion engines to new emission guidelines."

The Volkswagen Group

The Volkswagen Group is focusing on the electrification of its fleet for reducing CO2 emissions. It has been developing the Modular Electrical Toolkit since 2016. From 2020, the electric vehicle ID.31 was launched on the market out of a net CO2-neutral production. In addition Volkswagen offers its customers electricity from renewable sources for battery charging.

In the further course of its e-offensive until 2025, the group will launch almost 70 E-models and will sell more than three million electric vehicles annually. To produce these volumes, eight vehicle plants in Europe, China and the USA will be converted to electric vehicle production by 2022.

In addition, under its "goTOzero" mission statement, the Volkswagen Group has set itself targets for reducing CO2 emissions of its fleet, which consists of almost 11 million new vehicles annually being manufactured in 122 plants worldwide.


Kia is set to introduce a halo Electric Vehicle (EV) in 2021 as part of its plans to ramp up electrification to become a greener and more sustainable vehicle maker. The new model will spearhead plans by Kia to offer a total of 11 fully electric vehicles by the end of 2025 that will be produced in sufficient volumes to take 6.6% of the worldwide EV market. By that stage, the shortage of batteries that is currently limiting the supply of EV vehicles across the market will have abated, allowing Kia to boost production of electric cars to deliver more than 330,000 annually by 2025.


Honda strives to realise carbon neutrality for all products and corporate activities it is involved in by 2050. Striving for “zero environmental impact” of not only their products but the entire product lifecycle including corporate activities. Honda will focus on the following areas as the “three-pillars” of their initiatives: Carbon neutrality, Clean energy and Resource circulation.

In order to achieve a carbon-free goal on a “tank-to-wheel” basis, as the responsibility of an automaker, Honda will strive to increase the ratio of battery-electric vehicles (EVs) and fuel cell electric vehicles (FCVs) within overall unit sales in all major markets of electrification.

Honda has set high goals so that all share the vision of what they are trying to accomplish and take on challenges toward the realisation of their goals. In Japan, Honda will strive for an EV/FCV unit sales ratio of 20% by 2030, 80% by 2035 and 100% by 2040. They will also include hybrid-electric vehicles, and will strive to electrify 100% of their automobile unit sales in Japan by 2030, which will then flow on to the rest of the world market.


Back in 2017 Mazda announced “Sustainable Zoom-Zoom 2030,” its long-term vision for technology development that looks ahead to the year 2030.

In light of the significant changes in the global automobile industry, the new vision takes a longer-term perspective and sets out how Mazda will make use of driving pleasure—the fundamental appeal of the automobile—to help resolve issues facing the earth, society, and people.

This approach and its goals are in alignment with the Paris Agreement, an international agreement to combat climate change and reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and the Strategic Commission for the New Era of Automobiles, under Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI).

In addition, aiming to make fuels themselves as carbon neutral as possible, Mazda will step up collaborative efforts with other companies and between industry, academia, and government to encourage the spread of renewable liquid fuels such as microalgae biofuels.

To protect the earth, Mazda says that they will implement the following initiatives in order to maximise the effect of reduced greenhouse gas emissions under real-world conditions.

1. Aspire to make the best internal combustion engine in the world.
2. Combine the ideal internal combustion engine with efficient electrification technologies.
3. Introduce battery electric vehicles (BEVs) and other electric-powered technologies in regions that use clean energy to curb global warming and in regions that implement government policies to reduce air pollution.

Mazda electrification technologies

Mazda will strive to reduce CO2 emissions and enhance the joy of driving by deploying compact, lightweight electrification technologies, while further refining the internal combustion engine.

Mazda will introduce EVs as the optimal solution in regions that generate a high ratio of electricity from clean energy sources, or restrict certain vehicle types to reduce air pollution.

Mazda expect that by 2030, internal combustion engines combined with some form of electrification technology will account for 95% of the vehicles they produce and that battery EVs will account for 5%.


Subaru Corporation has established two new policies: the Subaru Global Sustainability Policy and the Human Rights Policy, both of which were effective from April 1, 2020.

In the environmental area, in particular, it has set a long-term goal toward achieving carbon neutrality by fiscal 2050 with respect to reducing the Group’s direct CO2 emissions. Together with reduction of CO2 emissions from its vehicles in operation, Subaru will make proactive efforts to achieve a carbon-free society.

The Subaru Group has set a new long-term goal of achieving carbon neutrality by fiscal 2050 with respect to reducing direct CO2 emissions from its business activities, including production, distribution, and sales.

Electrification goals will play a part in the future, and Subaru has planned that by 2030 at least 40% of Subaru global sales will consist of electric vehicles (EVs) or hybrid electric vehicles (HEVs). Also by the first half of 2030 Subaru will have applied electrification technologies to all Subaru vehicles sold worldwide.

AA Motoring News

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