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Government launches CO2 website

Fri, 03 Aug 2007

By Ben Pulman

Motor Industry

03 August 2007 09:56

Just as CAR Online has launched its Green cars section so the government has stepped up its ‘Act on CO2’ campaign.

Earlier this week, at the SMMT (Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders Ltd) HQ in London, Transport Minister Jim Fitzpatrick unveiled the Department of Transport’s online ‘Best on CO2’ car rankings. The new website - - lists all the cars on sale. You can search by class of car (Supermini up to Performance Car), transmission and fuel type. The website then ranks each car by its CO2 emissions and shows its tax bracket as well. The idea is that you’ll choose your next car based on these rankings. Fitzpatrick claims that ‘by choosing the car with the most fuel efficient engine in its class, drivers could reduce their engine CO2 emissions by 24 percent and potentially save a quarter on fuel costs’. However, the government also admits that that 24 percent is based on 2005 registration data. From these figures they then calculated what the average CO2 emissions of all the cars sold that year was, and what the potential figure could be if everyone switched to the lowest emissions car in their respective classes. However, the open-top category is led by the Smart Fortwo roadster, and the performance category includes everything from an Impreza WRX to a Porsche 911, and CAR can’t see owners of the latter trading down to the former. The government has also released tips to reduce emissions, and if all are followed correctly, it reckons you can reduce your tailpipe emissions by eight percent. For instance, buying a car with the number of seats for your family, and not with an extra row. Per chance could they be talking about seven seat 4x4s? Another of the government’s tips is to stick to speed limits because going at 50mph instead of 70mph can apparently reduce fuel consumption by 15 percent. But with the national set at 70mph the government says nothing of the increase in fuel consumption should you stray over the limit. It’s the obvious stuff of course though that can easily be done, like closing your windows, turning of the air con, removing your roof rack, and most importantly – and for safety’s sake too, planning and looking ahead.

By Ben Pulman