Plug-in hybrids: Is Europe heading for a new Dieselgate?

Plug-in hybrid vehicle (PHEV) sales are skyrocketing in Europe with half a million expected to be sold this year alone. Carmakers need to sell low emission vehicles to comply with the 2020/21 EU car CO2 standard which took effect in January 2020. But are these cars as low emission in the real world as in carmaker test labs? Or are PHEVs high emitting vehicles that carmakers sell as a compliance trick to meet the CO2 targets?

To find out, T&E has commissioned Emissions Analytics to test three of the most popular PHEVs sold in 2019: a BMW X5 (longest EV range PHEV available), a Volvo XC60 and the Mitsubishi Outlander. This study presents the test results and what they mean for the CO2 credentials of this technology. The executive summary is also available in Spanish.