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Reducing CO2 emissions from vans


Vans ('light commercial vehicles') account for around 12% of the light-duty vehicles newly registered in the EU and are responsible for around 2.5% of total EU emissions of carbon dioxide.

Van on the Move (c) iStockphoto

Since 2011, EU legislation sets CO2 emission targets for new vans registered in the EU. It covers vehicles designed and constructed primarily for the carriage of goods and with a maximum mass not exceeding 3.5 tonnes.

The Regulation is similar to that for new cars.

2017 target

On average, new vans registered in the EU shall not emit more than 175 grams of CO2 per kilometre by 2017.

Emissions of 175 g CO2/km correspond to about 6.6 l/100 km of diesel fuel consumption.

This EU fleet-wide target was already reached in 2013, four years ahead of schedule.

According to provisional data, the average emissions of new vans registered in 2018 in the EU and Iceland were 158.1 g CO2/km (EEA data).

2020 target

From 2020 on, the EU fleet-wide average emission target will be 147 grams of CO2 per kilometre.

Emissions of 147 g CO2/km correspond to around 5.5 l/100 km of diesel.

Specific emission targets for manufacturers

The binding emission targets for manufacturers are set according to the average mass of their vehicles, using a limit value curve. This means that manufacturers of heavier vans are allowed higher emissions than manufacturers of lighter vans. The curve is set in such a way that the targets for the EU fleet-wide average emissions are achieved.

Phase-in of requirements

The target of 175 g/km was phased in between 2014 and 2016. It applies to all newly registered vans of a manufacturer since 2017.

Penalty payments for excess emissions

If the average CO2 emissions of a manufacturer's fleet exceed its target in a given year, the manufacturer has to pay an excess emissions premium for each van registered.

Until 2018, this premium amounts to

  • €5 for the first g/km of exceedance
  • €15 for the second g/km
  • €25 for the third g/km
  • €95 for each subsequent g/km.

From 2019 onwards, the penalty will be €95 for each g/km of exceedance.


To encourage eco-innovation, manufacturers can be granted emission credits for vehicles equipped with innovative technologies for which it is not possible to demonstrate the CO2-reducing effects during the test procedure used for vehicle type approval. Such emission savings have to be demonstrated based on independently verified data.

The maximum emission credits for these eco-innovations per manufacturer are 7 g/km per year.

Super credits

During the years 2014 to 2017, manufacturers were given additional incentives to put on the market zero- and low-emission vans emitting less than 50 g/km through a 'super-credits' system.

This super-credits system for vans is not continued in relation to the 2020 target.

Manufacturer Pools

Manufacturers may group together and act jointly to meet their emission target.

In forming such a pool, manufacturers must respect the rules of competition law.

Derogations and exemptions

Manufacturers responsible for fewer than 22 000 new vans registered in the EU per year (“small volume” manufacturers) can propose their own derogation target, which has to be approved by the Commission based on the criteria set in the Regulation.

Manufacturers responsible for fewer than 1 000 new vans registered in the EU per year are exempted from meeting a specific emissions target, unless they voluntarily apply for a derogation target.

Monitoring of emissions

The Commission has set out rules for monitoring the CO2 emissions of new vans. Information on the monitoring results can be found under the Documentation tab.


Consolidated version of Regulation (EU) 510/2011

Modalities for reaching 2020 target

Regulation (EU) 510/2011

Brexit preparedness notices

Implementing legislation

NEDC-WLTP correlation

Adjustment of M0





Excess Emissions Premium


Monitoring of CO2 emissions - Regulation (EU) 510/2011


Commission Implementing Decisions